Saturday, August 29, 2009

On technical problems

The problem with committing to blogs or other online forums is that they are online. This sometimes means that things outside your control can hinder your participation. Like this morning*, when I turned on my laptop to check my email. I was expecting an urgent-ish message I hoped had ticked in overnight. Then I discovered I couldn’t log on at all.

Now, thinking there still might be hope I tried rebooting my computer. Still no Internet. I tried clicking on the “solve the problem”-box (but I never had much hope that this would work – since when did Microsoft Help ever really help anyone?).

The connection I’m on is a wireless one, but I also happen to know there is a wire in my room. Digging this out from underneath a bookcase, killing a few hybelkaniner in the process, I plugged it in, hoping “old-fashioned” technology would still be on my side. It farted in my general direction.

Now, there are computer-savvy people in the house (only not home at the moment), and I don’t believe for a second that the problem won’t be solved (consider the potential posting of this note a good sign)**. Also, there was thunder here last night, and there is the very real possibility that this might have killed our router (I don’t know if that’s the word in English – let me just jump windows to google to find out… wait a minute…).

Without any further ideas how to immediately solve the problem, I should take this opportunity of unconnectedness to reflect a bit over how grateful I should be that I get a chance every now and then to escape from my online “duties” and addictions. Normally I might actually appreciate this – disconnected from the world I often find it easier to connect with myself, and, for instance, write (just look at me now).
However, there is something preventing me from feeling this appreciation today. First of all, there is the message I was waiting for. It is important enough (and urgent enough) that I will sneak my way into the “research only” computer at the archives to check my email. So that’s taken care of (but annoying nevertheless).

Secondly, it’s the fact that without Internet access, I suddenly feel a lot lonelier in this big, foreign country. I rely on emails, facebook and skype to stay in touch with everyone at home (and my friends from elsewhere too). Without it I suddenly feel like I know how the US immigrants felt when they stepped off the boat a hundred years ago and realized that it would be three months (or more) before any news from home would reach them. I know I am exaggerating – after all, I will have Internet access again soon. Also, unlike my predecessors from a hundred years back, I have a cell phone. Plus, no matter how much we complain about it, the postal service will not take three months to send a letter from Norway to the US these days.
Still, I want my Internet back!


*”This morning” means yesterday morning. Had I known it would only be a day, I might not have panicked…

** I’m back online. Call off the pre-technology rescue party.

1 comment:

Rayna M. said...

I can imagine how helpless you must have been feeling. And I am glad it was only for a day.

And good you managed to get a post out of it.

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