The Internet went out.
Plug, unplug. Wait. Nothing. Repeat.
I probably did these at least four times before recognizing I should expand my troubleshooting and call the dreaded automated help line. Yes, I am experiencing technical issues, thank you. “Sorry, we’re experiencing network outages in your area. We hope to have this resolved by 10:46 PM.” It’s 7 o’clock now. I’m at a loss. What did we do before wifi? I try to remember.
I’m also a little mad at myself for being so baffled by this brief window of forced disconnection. I may be a Millennial, but I didn’t grow up in the full-blown tech frenzy we live in now. I left my laptop at home and took hand-written notes in all of my classes. I didn’t have a smart phone until I was 23, after my first summer as a counselor at Mishawaka. Netflix was still a DVD subscription service when I was in college. Snapchat didn’t exist. Instagram was a newborn. This shouldn’t be so hard for me.
As someone who works for camp year-round, I am baffled by how much the outage threw me. And the reality is, if it was mid-June and I were up at Camp, with or without children around, I wouldn’t be bothered. I probably wouldn’t even notice. There’s something about the permission given to you by nature that enables you to quit keeping up with all the tech and social media stuff we all unconsciously fill our days with on a day-to-day basis. Your expectations for what your days are supposed to look like simplify. You have sunsets and loons on the lake and games of Globular to mesmerize you. Soapies to take, mini corndogs to eat, cabins to clean–these things are everything. What’s happening in the outside world is neither here nor there. You are you, and that’s all that matters.
I spun some records, wrote this blog post on a legal pad, took a breath, slowed down, and wished for camp.
It starts in 85 days, if you were wondering.
Greta, Girls Camp Program Director