When I lived in the UK, I pretty much refused to use my mobile phone – I did carry one for emergencies, but for the most part, my attitude was “if people want to get hold of me, they can leave a message on my machine at home”.
I didn’t know what my number was and I turned the thing on, maybe once a week – if I remembered! It wasn’t that I was a techno-phobe, I just couldn’t be bothered with it all . . . some people did get a bit cross with me.
However, the culture here is very different. No-one really phones anyone at home – I’m not even sure that everyone has a land line! Dubai’s social scene seems to exist on phoning/texting people’s mobiles. Heaven help me if I lost my contacts list – every number I need for my life is stored in it!! I now send hundreds of texts every month and my phone is rarely far from sight. Similarly, my family and friends from the UK do send me loads of e-mails and I spend a huge amount of time on the computer. I rarely surf the net these days as I don’t have time – I simply send and receive a good amount of mail from those far away – which I love sending and receiving (keep them coming)! I was completely gutted when my mail server went down, somewhere on the other side of the world, for the best part of a week, which meant couldn’t get any of my mails. . . . my world nearly stopped turning. How very sad.
For my birthday – Tim bought me a BlackBerry. An all-singing, all dancing machine (a smart-phone I think it is called) which is not only my phone but offers me permanent access to my e-mail. It is wonderful! It now pings when I get an e-mail, bleeps when I get a text message and rings when I get a phone call. I can even have MSN Messenger conversations on it – that is, if I learn to type fast enough on the little QWERTY keyboard! All my contacts are now synchronized with my e-mail! Even better, it is programmed to turn off at 10pm and to switch on again at 6am Dubai time (a girl always needs her 8 hours).
How things have changed – in a good way? Or I am I just a sad, desperate person who can’t bear to be on her own and out of contact with people?
The answer – my family and friends rock my world and given that I am so far from so many of them, it makes the world feel that little bit smaller!