Summer Reflections…er… Ramblings

*could I have found a cheezier title… maybe… if I thought hard enough about it.
It has been a pretty good summer so far. I cannot believe it is the first of August already though. Decision time is upon me – when to go home, formally end ‘summer vacation’ and get back to ‘work’…

I have had very little access to the internet over the last 5 weeks (it is harder than you think to find an open wireless connection out in the country!). It has been a mixed blessing. We all talk about ‘getting away from it all’ and ‘recharging our (mental) batteries’ but how much is too much? I have come to realize that without a steady connection, after about a week I start to feel anxiety and an urge to go home, back to the city where I am garanteed my own secure network, whether in my office or out on my back balcony – but if all else fails, there is always one of many free wireless networks to connect to (usually institutional ones – i promise). Not that I need to be online all the time, but just knowing that it is there if I need it… If I get into an argument over the definition of something, having google at my fingertips … If I am hired for an impromptu few hours of reference mining, then I can turn the computer on, open a beer and search at my leisure. Instead, I have been chained to my sister’s 10 hours of dial-up /mo. on her IBM pc purchased in 1997 (nary an upgrade to speak of to boot!).

 But is it really just about my being able to connect when I want to? As much as I hate to admit it, I think its a bit more egocentric than that… I miss being able to check my email a few times a day. I miss feeling like I am in the loop (cannot believe that I havent turned on trillian in over a month!!). And it is not simply lacking internet that makes me feel this way… I think…

Being away for the summer can be rejuvenating, but it can also be alienating. It’s funny, because a good friend of mine, who stays in the city all summer, always talks about feeling like she is missing something when we all go away for the summer. Ironically enough, I feel the same way when I am gone. Not to take anything away from the incredibly wonderful time I get to spend on the east coast. Seeing my family, swimming in the ocean, having regular bonfires and marvelling at the stars (and how clearly we can see them) while laying on the grassy hill behind my sister’s house is nothing to balk at. And to be able to do it for 5-7 weeks a year, complaining would just be downright rude – but if I could only have my cake and eat it too…private jet?? teletransportation?? or maybe just a nice high-speed internet connection at my disposal, the line between summer and the city might not seem a thousand kilometers away (well, 1,011 kms to be exact!).

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