Monday 19 May 2014

Offline - A Day Without Internet

6:00 AM

The alarm rang and while I still was half asleep one morning, as a ritual the first thing I did was to connect my cell phone to WiFi. To my surprise, I spotted that I had received no "updates" since last night!

That summer morning, a few minutes later whilst the environment was serene and filled with chirping of cuckoo bird, I stepped out to check if the hawker has dropped newspapers in our veranda (baramda). While grabbing the newspaper, I saw the headline which read - "No Internet today". My eyes went wide open and all sleep flew away. Unlike everyday, I sat reading the news article. It reported that during the midnight, the world's internet crashed! For a moment I was dumbstruck pondering whether it is really practicable. But it surely was not supposed to be fictitious, since I had no updates on my phone that morning.

8:30 AM

there-is-no-internetEvery news channel had confirmed the unbelievable by now. The channels reported that the internet should be stable in the next 12-15 hours.

With my face drooped, I sat imagining how would I spend the rest of my day being disconnected with rest of the world... The first learning of my day was to understand the value of time. This because it was the due date for paying my phone bill online, which would otherwise have to paid with surcharge later.

9:00 AM

Though, as a habit, I kept checking my phone, for emails, Whatsapp and other social updates. Sooner, I engaged myself in some other activities like helping my Mom in household chores, visited the nearby temple, assisted my father in gardening, which otherwise was my time for all sorts of unproductive or partially-productive activities on my cell phone and laptop over the internet. It was a contrasting experience to me that left me with inner satisfaction.

6:30 PM.

I was back home early from office.

As a part of my routine, during and after the dinner I had to be stuck to my cell phone. After all, I am supposed to be updated about all that is happening around, from social networking to the news app on my phone to my favorite whatsapp to gmail and my office emails to the melodious songs on saavn. I would barely raise my head to talk to my family everyday.

But this fateful day was entirely different. I had to, rather, I got to spend time with my parents. We talked about all sort of stuff that day while having dinner. After dinner we went for a long walk. I shared my experiences of the day with them. Also, I turned into a keen listener to my mother and father about what they did the whole day, varying from my mother's complaints against the maid and my father's comments on the country's changing political scenario.

I shared with them my experiences of the day at office.

11:00 AM

In the absence of connectivity to the web, amusingly, office' work came to a standstill. Software Engineers can do zero work in the such a situation. We went on a team lunch, and played some team building games out in the open. This rejuvenated the child in all of us. We also got to see the sunset after a long time. We enjoyed and laughed and almost forgot that the virtual world of internet and social networking. No email popped up and no chats with fake smileys came in that day.  This should originally have been termed as "staying connected".

10:00 PM

Sitting idle, I pondered over how long the day was a fun filled day. And then I realized that it has been months since I spoke to some of my distant close friends. Thanks to Internet that kept us updated to such an extent that we didn't get a chance to hear each other's voices. It was the day when I made phone calls to all of them. All our college time memories were refreshed by then.

11:00 PM

Ideally this is the time for me to stick on the bed with mobile and typing on Whatsapp. But this time, carrying no regrets of the absence of it, I went towards my bookshelf, smelling the fragrance of what we call as unused books- my novels and journals. I chose one of my long pending novels, read it for sometime and went to bed with a smile on the face cherishing the lovely thoughts of the day.

6:00 AM

I was in the lap of a stress-free, quiescent sleep and a few minutes after that the alarm on my cell phone rang and I learnt that all this was a dream. Yes, this was a dream and the world's Internet is intact! :)

Thinking about life without Internet may seem like a nightmare for almost all, but this dream woke me up with a feeling that there's a lot in life than technology and that Internet is a black, frivolous hole that sucks away time in huge, horrible chunks.
Night walk with your close ones on the streets is more pacifying than travelling across the planet on Google Earth.

The euphoria of watching the radiant sunset with a loved one on an evening is better than blindly liking pictures of those who are merely "online friends".

Every untweeted observation of daily life is more sacred than retweeting the tweets that in no way correspond to your reality.

Find sometime to recharge yourself, not just your gadgets.



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