People that don't have blackberries just don't understand.
Spoken like an addict...because, I am one.
I pride myself on my independence. But, secretly, I live with a high degree of dependence on my blackberry. I'm not one of those obsessive compulsive blackberry checkers. I exercise discipline by putting it away during meetings and, in certain special circumstances, during dinner. Still, I must have it with me at all times, even on holidays.
It tells me what time it is (I don't wear a watch). It tells me where I need to be (I don't have a daytimer) and how to get there (I don't carry maps). It tells me the news (I don't get the paper). It tells me when to get up in the morning (I don't carry an alarm clock on holidays). It enables my employer to reach me, no matter what time it is or where I am. It enables me to access the internet from virtually anywhere, which, in turn, makes it possible for me to fix just about any problem.
This week, while I was a broad...er, abroad...my blackberry stopped taking power. I tried several solutions, all of which were unsuccessful. In transit, in a foreign country, and without my itinerary, a watch, a map, or a way to communicate. At first, it was difficult to cope. It took a good 5760 minutes before my feeling of frustration turned to one of liberation. I can break the recovery process into four stages.
Stage One: Confusion and Agitation
I found myself giving my body a pat down, searching for a blackberry fix like a chain smoker searches for a pack of cigarettes. I eventually removed the source of the torture and put the device in the bottom of my bag.
Stage Two: Denial
Every electronics store I passed, I searched for power solutions. A new USB cable. Cellboost batteries. A new adapter. A new plug. I would not accept that I couldn't use my blackberry. There had to be a way to get power into that thing!
Stage Three: Uneasy Acceptance and Adaptation
My empty wallet eventually put an end to my search for power solutions and I had to accept that I would have to wait until I was back in Canada. I began to find alternatives - internet cafe's, public clocks, newspapers.
Stage Four: Liberation
I can pinpoint almost to the minute the moment at which I was liberated from my blackberry dependence. Having the freedom to choose when to check my email. I guess the world can get by for a little while without an immediate response from me.
Of course, a relapse is inevitable as I will need to begin using it again for work. Hopefully, this time, I can avoid abusing it.