by Suzanne Welsh
For the past year I've had a cell phone. Yes, me, the lone hold out in my town where people upgrade electronic devices like changing shoes, broke down and bought my first cell phone. To give you a little past history of why this was so monumental, let me take you back to an age when cell phones were nothing more than a glint in Ray Bradbury's eyes as he wrote his first Star Trek screenplay.
As a young teen I loved talking on the phone. It was the social network of our time. The phone hung on the wall in the kitchen, but the cord was long enough to stretch to the stairs leading down to our basement. (In Ohio we all had basements.) So after dinner, washing the dishes and doing my homework I could spend half an hour perched on the top step talking to my friends--usually my best friend Marion or my equally good friend Terry. We'd talk about school, boys, friends, boys, clothes, boys, music....and yeah...boys
That stayed the norm until I went away to nursing school. Then I'd talk to boys, friends and my family on the pay phone at the end of the dorm hall, a fact that probably saved my nursing school career, since it limited the time I could spend distracted from studying, (minus the TV time, the chatting in other people's dorm rooms time, oh yeah and the vodka on the weekend time.)
By the time I started my family portable phones were the new rage. But I stood by my old favorite, the wall mounted phone. Didn't have to worry about charging it between uses. Always knew where it was...mounted on the wall. And any child wanting to talk on the phone had to do it within hearing range of the mama. :)
But then we moved to Texas about the same time cell phones invaded every home. It was amazing to look around when stopped at red lights to see every driver in front, behind and around me talking on a cell phone. One day I was at the groceries, enjoying the quiet as I thumped the cantelopes, only to have my peace distrubed by a lady yelling at her child over the cell phone. Please, I'd come shopping to get away from my family. Why would I want them to be able to find me via a portable phone?
After that a few things happened to change my mind.
1) I became a romance writer. I made friends and started traveling more for my new career. I needed to stay in touch with my family, and having a cell phone meant no long distance bills to my husband, no matter where I'd roamed.
2) My daughter became pregnant. Now it was very important for me to be reached any hour of the day or night.
3) It was time to come out of the dark ages. People were actually texting and on the internet from their phones. Sigh. The old wall mounted phone could never do that!
So now I find myself charging my phone when I'm at home. My kids ONLY call my cell, unless I don't answer that. At work, I put it on vibrate and carry it in my pocket...but only IF I'm expecting one of them to call. Despite my seduction to the dark side of modern communication, I refuse to talk on the phone in a patient's room!
So dear friends, how about you? Have you ever held out against something, only to slowly be seduced to it's good points?