I reached for my iPad to check the latest Facebook updates, an innocuous gesture surely repeated millions of times daily across the world. Staring back at me was the dreaded red bar with “no internet connection” stated in big letters. Annoyed, I walked into the den where my modem is connected, only to be met with a terrifying sight. The bright red power light glared at me like cyclops, and not a single other button was lit. Frantically, I unplugged the power source, waited the recommended two minutes, and then reconnected the cord, certain that all would be well. Immediately every light on the front of the modem turned a lovely green color, until, one by one, like candles being extinguished, they went out. Once again, only the power button was lighted, and what an ugly shade of red it was.
My troubleshooting skills having been exhausted, I phoned my internet service provider, described the problem, and was promptly advised to repeat the above scenario. Obligingly, I did as asked, with the same dissatisfactory result. The technician diagnosed a faulty modem, checked my account to determine that mine was under warranty, and placed an order for a new one. “It will arrive in four days.” “Four days?!? Is your company unfamiliar with overnight shipping? I need internet service in order to conduct my business from home!” My protests were received with indifference as the employee mechanically went about summarizing my concern and her effort to help me.
Although it’s true that I sometimes work from home, the real panic of being without an internet connection for several days was about my incessant need to keep up with Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, e-mail, CNN, and ESPN. Now I would be forced to exist without constant online updates for several hours each day, and the feelings of loss and confusion were overwhelming. Embarrassed by my reaction, I sat down and thought about the situation until reason took hold. It was sobering to realize that the thought of cyberspace moving right along without me could be so upsetting.
I have calmed down now, am reading a great novel, and have even hammered out a few texts on my sad little cell phone so my nephew knows I haven’t forgotten him. The enforced break isn’t doing me any harm; maybe it’s even a blessing in disguise. And if the delivery company brings my new modem ahead of schedule, I promise not to utter a word of complaint . . . .