No Service Vacation

Technology sometimes just ticks me off. There is nothing more aggravating than seeing “no service” on the top left hand side of your cell phones screen. Or sitting in an airport under a “complimentary internet service provided by ABC Company” sign, and not being able to connect or waiting 2-3 minutes for a download. (thinking dial up is back)

Now try it for 2 days. No cell phone, no internet, no service. After the first 2-3 hours you start to get edgy, impatient. You look every 10-15 minutes to see if a signal will magically appear. Four to six hours later you start fearing the worst. Did I get that email, did that order come in? Finally, it’s evening and you fidget until you fall asleep.

You wake up in the morning and still no service, as if magically they installed a cell tower over night. You go for a walk to see if somewhere in this forsaken land there is a cell reception. Then the beauty of the woods hits you. To your right, the Grand Canyon and you the see your two sons suspended above the canyon. First reaction is fear, then awe. Incredible! You look around and suddenly break into laughter with people staring at you wondering what is wrong with you.

You realize how foolish your craving to be connected is. How sad it is that you were oblivious to some of the most beautiful real estate in the world. You realize your office can live for a couple days without you. After all you have a great staff, they can handle anything. The office will be there when you get back.

A calm comes over you, you turn off your phone and for 24 hours you enjoy your family and the world around you. An epiphany.

When was the last time you were disconnected, I mean really disconnected? Share your experience and thoughts.

Note: I promised my wife that our August vacation will be disconnected. Stay tuned to see how I did.

5 replies
  1. pabdool
    pabdool says:

    Great points Skip. I’ll be writing a white paper soon on “No report day!” which is very similar to your concept.

    At the end of the day, every communication device ever invented was meant to simulate face to face communication. We’re getting close…

  2. Nigel Cliffe
    Nigel Cliffe says:

    Hi Skip, I have just returned home from going out to dinner with my family (my daughter’s last exam was today – so we went out to celebrate!) only to find myself drawn back to the office to catch up on emails, arghh!

    Your note was very timely….

    I’m off now to have coffee – the emails can wait 🙂

    Best wishes to all…


  3. Bob McDevitt
    Bob McDevitt says:

    It may be an age thing or a couple of brushes of mortality that brings me back to the basics of life. I’ve learned to accept that the all of the world and business will exist without me. Egotistically I hope that some may positively miss me when I’m not about, but I do know that the world will keep on spinning if I am absent from the race for a spell.

  4. Neil Merchant
    Neil Merchant says:

    I just got back from 3 days in a house with no broadband and no PC. All I had was my Blackberry. And a TV with just 4 channels. Wimbledon’s on, and that was being covered so the lack of other channels wasn’t a problem, but having to try and use my BB for serious email and web browsing was a nightmare. I felt quite antsy.

  5. Dan Soper
    Dan Soper says:

    My wife and I took a cruise out of Long Beach, CA last year, disconnecting the digital stream and disconnecting from the kids for a week It doesn’t take long to convince yourself of the good parenting, and good documentation and back-ups put into place for years before the disconnect. If we treat our lives like the true legacy we need to someday pass on, it’s comforting to know all will be okay if we go off the grid, whether planned or un-planned.

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