Almost Off the Grid

We just completed our first week of summer camp at the dojo. We run camp from 9am-3pm every day, in addition to our normal afternoon and evening karate classes. It is July. In New York. Most of the dojo is not air conditioned.

Yes we are badass.

I love summer camp but it is exhausting. So in order to prepare for our three week adventure we spent last weekend in the Poconos, trying to do as little as possible. We stayed in a lovely cabin lent to us by two Senseis from another Kenshikai dojo. It was exactly the right amount of nature for me; trees and grass and a lake outside, running water, TV and wifi inside.  There was even a deer:

Every woodsy vacation needs a deer.

It was beautiful. However, upon arriving in our lovely country oasis, we learned that our cellphones did not work and our ridiculous collection of laptops and tablets could not connect to our friends' Apple brand wireless network. We were not compatible. Silly Mac people.

Matthew did some research and managed to pull off an elaborate super hacker style fix that got everything working again. But before he did, I spent about four hours off the grid. No phone calls. No email. No pictures of kittens and babies in blissful slumber together. It was tense times.

I'm exaggerating of course. I know many of you do this kind of thing on purpose, this unplugging, sometimes off in the wilderness with nothing but a machete and a water bottle. I know because you post about it on Facebook prior to departure, as in "I will be off the grid for the next couple of days. If you need to reach me send a carrier pigeon to Kiribati." 

Also, it is not like I planned on spending my weekend of relaxation constantly checking Facebook statuses. But after a day of sunning and swimming and lounging on the hammock on the porch (Oh how I LOVE a hammock!) I like to curl up on the sofa with my sweet husband and my good buddy, the Internet. I also like to fall asleep while watching reruns of Sex and the City. It's my thing. Finally, I am one of those people who gets a little lightheaded when there is no way for people to reach me. What if there is some kind of crisis? What if someone dies???

So I was a little freaked in the beginning. But then I started to accept that I might have a weekend without technology and something weird happened. I actually started to like it.

First of all, I noticed how nice and quiet it was. Since my phone had no service, gone were the constant updates, that little notification tune that goes off whenever I get an emal from Old Navy telling me about a great sale on shorts. Also, since my phone was useless for all but taking photos, when I had a moment with nothing to do, I looked around. I watched the trees sway in the breeze. I watched Maya swim. Matthew and I talked to each other.

It was nice. 

Well, there was the half hour when Matthew drove off to the store in the CAR (!)  and left Maya and I by the LAKE (!) and I pictured him lying in a ditch somewhere while our child was simultaneously drowning in the brown water and there was no way to contact each other!!!! 

But other than that....bliss!

Then Matthew fixed the internet. Which, I am not going to lie, was awesome. I got to watch my normal crappy reruns before bed. I got to see how many likes my latest status update had gotten. (Don't know why this matters but you all know it does.) My phone was still useless but who needs to call people when you can chat.

But mostly, I still just lay in the hammock and watched the sun move through the trees. The real sun. Through real trees. In the real world. (Also, I read Game of Thrones. Very different world.)

Then we came home. But those few hours of silence hadn't been all for naught. I decided to shut off all the notifications on my phone except for phone calls and text messages. So at least I have to make a special effort to see what Old Navy is selling today. (Its denim, in case you were wondering.) 

As for this weekend, the plan is to do a whole lot of nothing. 
Does anyone have a hammock I can borrow?


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