First thing – I really appreciated my new iPhone yesterday, because we (gasp, shock!) were at home all day with no internet access! Not sure whether the issue was with our modem or the storms and rain just got to the phone lines, but we couldn’t connect to our ISP at all. The iPhone can connect to the web using 3G1, so at least we could check the banking and communicate with friends and so on.
Got me thinking about what life would be like if the whole web went away forever, for whatever reason (huge electromagnetic pulse due to reversal of the earth’s magnetic field, for example). I mean, I can vaguely remember life before the web – it’s only about as old as Alex – but it has transformed my mode of life so completely that it’s hard to imagine not having it. Even a day would have been hard to take without a little sneaky access.
And then we’re also very short on cash right now. Part of it is that public holidays and timing have kept money out of the bank that should have gone in, part just what we spent on Christmas, part that the tenant in our rental property left suddenly and we had to find a new one, with all the costs and delays that entails. Anyway, we’re by no means poor, and will have thousands tomorrow when all these things unsnarl, but for right now we’re eking out a few dollars to get us by.
Which meant that I went to the supermarket this morning to pick up some stuff for breakfast, and had to actually look at all the available sausages to see which style and package was the cheapest, rather than to simply pick the ones that looked tastiest, as is my more usual pattern. And it struck me, just how much of a privilege it is that we normally don’t have to shop to a budget. Matt, Cassie’s boyfriend, has been a bit shocked by the grocery bills when he comes shopping with us… because he’s a uni student who is supporting himself on government allowances and shops very frugally. I don’t think it’s that we’re ridiculously extravagant… but as I say, we do look at the food and see whether we’ll like it, and only rarely look at the price.
Two useful wakeup calls about things I tend to otherwise take very much for granted…