How Will I Re-Adjust?
Being a 22-year-old, I consider myself relatively technology saavy. When the TV won’t connect to the DVD player, I can usually mash enough buttons until things begin to function. And if it doesn’t start to function…well I didn’t want to watch that movie ANYWAY. However, I am concerned that the part of my brain that houses this information is slowly melting while in Spain.
Yes, I have a Spanish cell phone. It cost 30 euros. It’s pinkish red. It’s a flip phone. I have to type text messages using T9. Remember T9? From wayyyy back… 2 years ago? That used to be the prominent way to send SMS messages before touch screens and keyboards. I also don’t have a contract. I use pay-as-you-go. Why? Because I have all of 20 contacts, and receive approximately 4 calls/week and 10 texts/week. I’m super popular. In defense of me actually having friends, us abroad kids typically use the Internet to make plans because it’s free-er. I never have my phone with me, because I never really miss anything. Sometimes, I get myself in trouble with the few people who actually use a phone to contact me because it maybe take upwards of 5-8 hours before I notice a missed call.
There is a brilliant thing the Spaniards who use “pay-as-you-go” do. It’s called a toque. Let me teach you about the toque through an example. You and I are going to lunch at 2 p.m. I am there, and waiting for you. Instead of spending the 15 cents to text you to say “I’m here” they simply call, let it ring once, and hang up. No one is using their credit on their phone (called saldo in Spanish) but messages are coming across. It’s so genius!
I’m concerned for myself when I return to the U.S…how will I ever re-connect to the wired world? I don’t have any phone number there at the moment (word on the street is that, while I was once a 410 girl, I may have to change my area code) and when I do have a cell phone again, will I remember to use it? Will people call me? Or maybe… I will be so excited by the fact that I am not paying for each individual text message that I will text everyone the most random and unnecessary pieces of news. We’ll have to see how things pan out.
Either way, I have in fact purchased my ticket back to the U.S. and should be making my state-side debut mid-June. Get ready, people!