Sometimes I Wonder About New Technology

Hoosier Perspectives

After all, grandpa and grandma survived without it.

Published on: November 12, 2012

My cell phone should be attached to my hip. If they could do that, I would probably have the surgery. I feel lost without it, but I'm bad about remembering where it is.

One morning recently I had a 400 mile trip with two stops for interviews, actually taking me into Ohio briefly and back into Indiana.

I got ready the night before by using Mapquest – can't live without it, right?

I put in the first place I was going, then got directions from the first place to the second place. I was all set.

Monday morning didn't start off so good. Twenty minutes into the trip I realized I had left my cell phone still on the charger at home. If I kept going, I should arrive right on time. If I turned around to get it, I would be 40 minutes late. As much as I felt nervous without it, I went on. This would not be a good day for the car to break down.

Technology, love it or hate it, is here to stay.
Technology, love it or hate it, is here to stay.

Before I arrived at the first location, I realized I had promised I would call a couple people from the road. After all, I have plenty of driving time. Maybe it's not the smartest thing to do, but it's expedient. What would I do now? There aren't even pay phones at gas stations in most places anymore. And I no longer have a calling card. Probably anyone 14 or younger wouldn't know what a calling card is.

Fortunately, one of the people I interviewed at the first stop was gracious enough to let me use his cell phone to make the calls. It was a bit awkward, but I was desperate. With the calls made, I headed out following Mapquest directions to the second stop, near Monroeville.

I don't have GPS – someone stole it a while back out of my car. It's probably time to remedy that situation, though I wonder about technology that, out of nowhere, tells you to turn right when all that is to the right is a field or a lake.

I was sailing in ahead of schedule. I followed the directions to the tee and wound up on Webster Street in Monroeville. The only problem was it was all houses. I was looking for a business. That's when it dawned on me that there must be a Webster Street and a Webster Road. I typed in road the night before, or at least I thought I did. At any rate, I was passing a house on Webster Street.

A kind old lady at the local gas station with an old-fashioned dial telephone and a phone book saved the day. I called the business, found out how to get there, some five miles away, and finished the trip.

I even made it home without the cell phone, although it was the first thing I went for when I got home.

Technology, though I can't live without it, sometimes is hard to live with. Anymore when I ask for directions, people just give me their address. Give me directions. I'm just leery enough to think that map quest or GPS might not work. I want to know how to get there the old-fashioned way.