On Wednesday, May 16, 2012, I realized after I had boarded my train that I left my cell phone at home.
I immediately jumped up, thinking I could catch my husband before he got too far…but to what aim? What could he do? He couldn’t go home and retrieve it before the train left, so I sat back down. Realization set in: I would be without communication until I reached work. Then panic set in. What was I going to do without my phone?
Now, this may seem like a minor dilemma, but I’ve come to rely so heavily on my phone that doing without it could nearly leave me stranded.
Let’s not focus on the fact that my phone is my entertainment for my one hour and fifteen minute train ride into Brooklyn. Not having my music and Twitter meant I was left looking dejectedly out the window until I eventually fell asleep.
Most important is what happens when I reach Brooklyn. The first thing I do is call the Access-A-Ride (AAR) service to get vehicle information for my ride to work, otherwise I can only guess at who or what may be picking me up. Sometimes the drivers call me first, which is even better. But without my phone, they wouldn’t be able to reach me. Maybe they’d even leave me! I needed to get to a phone.
Well, I tried using the payphones available at the station, figuring I wouldn’t need change for a toll free call. Wrong! No dial tone on any of the phones, and no change in my purse. And try getting change of $5 at a LIRR ticket window. “Sorry, no change, honey.” My frustration level is rising.
I had no other choice but to take a chance and see if I could figure out which vehicle was there for me. I went upstairs, went outside, and stood looking around to see if there were any cars or vans just sitting. After a few minutes, I noticed a green van sitting at the traffic light that didn’t move when the light turned green. I did my slow walk to the van, and asked before stepping off of the curb, “Are you Access-A-Ride?” He said yes. Yay!
Ok, this story is getting old fast. Long story short, the rest of the day went better. With a bit of foresight and planning, I was able to make arrangements for handling my afternoon ride and for meeting my husband. I will say that I spent part of the day sulking and depressed because I missed my phone. I missed my phone! I missed an inanimate object that has somehow become an extension of who I am, of how I stay connected, of how I stay informed, of how I communicate, of how I stay entertained, of how, apparently, I live my life. For an oldie like me, even as tech savvy as I think I am, this still amazes me.
Today I did NOT forget my cell phone. How do you think I’m writing this post? (With Pandora playing in the background).