Thursday, February 25, 2016

Unplugged -- Day 121

I’m a pretty smart guy. I have managed to survive on this planet for over four decades and have created a couple miniature versions of myself (one male, one female -- just to see what that would be like), but I will still never understand the wizardry that is cellphones. Between the science and the economics, it is a mystery that just makes me want to move to a cabin in the woods on the edge of a lake and talk to the trees. (If you haven’t noticed, I’m halfway there already.)

We like to stay connected as much as anyone else. Maybe a little more. Okay, truth be told, my daughter and I are constantly online. It is one of our basic needs and it is her key to happiness. I have disc golf as my happy place, Anya recharges with the energy of the trees, but Zoe needs her virtual friends to find her center. When we were living in our last apartment, I paid a premium for super fast internet, opening up the entire world with a few mouse clicks. No questions went unanswered, no topic went undiscussed. We felt superior to our TV watching friends, because we didn’t have to sit through commercials -- we were the commanders of our own entertainment. Movies, TV shows, and music, all in glorious High Definition. Researching how to take this experience with us on the road led to frustration.

There are people out there that are full-time RVers that make thier living via the internet. Not just because they publish a travel blog that has advertising on it (although there are dozens of those -- you probably can’t live on those residuals alone.) They run a business of some kind, and always have a good connection. The secret? They have unlimited internet on a “grandfathered” Verizon plan. That is not helpful! What we needed was something that was going to be attainable NOW, not something that we should have done three years ago. Through trial and error, we did finally come to a solution. Remember the Great Data Crisis? Now we are online as much as we need to be. As long as we stay in the coverage area.

Trip planning has become an interesting project, as we now are trying to follow the Sprint data coverage map with stops along the way for disc golf. Online coverage maps are notoriously inaccurate, as illustrated by our experience here at Lake Mineral Wells State Park. The map says that we’re within a good coverage zone, but it doesn’t reach our actual campsite. We’re about a half mile outside the range of the tower, making for an excellent example of a First World Problem. I like to imagine Zoe telling her kids in the future about the days back when she had to hike up a mountain to get cell service.

Our backyard

Posted by Anya Phenix on Friday, February 26, 2016

We have now been here for four days, and I have learned to accept the separation. Letting questions go unaswered, trusting in my prior trip planning for the route to our next stop. I have discovered that my constant connection is a crutch that has been preventing me from finding the inner peace that I have been seeking. I have to let go of the worries of the outside world, and accept that what I have is all I need.

Learn to be content in your present situation. Where you are right now is exactly where you are supposed to be. Savor each moment as perfect. Live in the right now. When you can do that, you will find eternal peace and happiness.

I am not yet there, but I’m working on it.

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