Yesterday morning I put on farm clothes, gathered my trowel and work gloves, and headed to the greenhouse to put tomatoes into the garden bed.
And I almost picked up my cell phone too. Half the time I have no pocket (especially now that we're past jacket weather), and I must carry the thing in my hand.
But yesterday I decided to leave the phone in the house and give myself a break from the constant, low-grade demand of that gadget.
I consciously decided to throw myself back 30 years ago, to a time in my life that I didn't feel the need to have a phone on my person 24/7. Do you recall that feeling? The freedom? The calmness? The absence of urgency?
A cell phone is a kind of addiction -- even when it's not dinging or ringing, folks feel a compulsion to "check it" to make sure it didn't forget to ding or ring them with some urgent message ... like, "Here's a photo of a silly dog lol" from a friend they haven't seen in twenty years. Or perhaps their cell phone company notifying them of how many minutes they have left. You know, really important things that we allow to invade our private peace every minute of every day.
With a cell phone, you're never alone, and perhaps that's the point. We've forgotten how to relish being alone.
I'm planning to do this more often -- leave my cell phone in the house. If somebody calls, I can find out later. I have a right to personal, private peace. Time with my own head. Time when nobody can reach me unless it's so urgent they drive to my home and physically find me.
Why did we think wireless technology would free us? We are attached to the petty world of constant communication by the invisible wires of compulsion, of obligation, of addiction to the next message. I'm snipping those wires deliberately. If you need me, leave a message. I'll get back to you when I'm done in the greenhouse.