I went on a vacation and lost my iPhone.
Over the last weekend, we drove up to Niagara Falls, then crossed the border stayed overnight at Niagara at Ontario, saw the Safari near Toronto, and then drove back south via Detroit. It was a fun trip. Loads of pictures and laughs, excitement and wonder mixed, met family near Detroit and everything went great, except for the fact that some little twit swiped my phone in matter of minutes.
The mistake’s mine of course, for letting it out of my sight and ultimately, there are only so many samaritans in this world.
It’s three days since and I miss it so. The drive to work and back today was the hardest. The phone kept me company, the music, the mails, the occasional catching up on calls that I can’t once I get home. It’s been with me for a good year now and it is a neat piece, no doubt. I still am unsure of whether am more upset coz I lost the piece or I lost $200 carelessly. A buck goes a long way in these times, and considering I have never ever lost a single gadget (and we are gadget freaks at home) or expensive thing, it hurts more. I am a certified klutz and I can misplace stuff around, but I always find them quickly. Top it all, am paranoid about losing things, and hence am always on my toes with anything moderately expensive. Laissez-faire cautious.
My biggest fear is that I would lose my keys or wallet and then I’d be locked out in some godforsaken barren land. I know. Weird.
So this is what happened.
After spending the whole afternoon walking up and down the American side of the Falls and doing the tourist thing, we crossed over to the Canadian side around 6.30 pm and checked into our very fine hotel that I paid a princely $200 plus for an evening’s stay coz we’d get to see the amazing Horseshoe Falls from the 16th floor. It was worth every penny too, and you’d agree once you see the pictures.
Decided we’d quickly go grab dinner and then take a walk in the night alongside the falls which would now be lit with the colors. The pool was inviting too and so was the jacuzzi in the room. So we decided to just walk across the road to this quaintly decorated Italian restaurant called My Cousin Vinnys. Don’t laugh yet, there’s more. The band outside was loud, so we chose to sit inside and had a fairly okay meal. Wrapping up, munchkin got antsy and refused to sit still, so while the husband waited for the check, I took her out to stand outside and gaze at the flowers and the cars zooming by.
She declares that she has to go. I divert her. Point to the Hotel standing across the road and say, hold on, a few more minutes and we can go up. Remember this place is public, we try and not go if we can hold. She nods. Skips around. I take the phone out of my bag to check mail, and accept a fb friend invite. Was checking temperature as the weather gets chill. She can’t hold it anymore and starts whining. So I give in and we walk in again, motioning to the husband on our way. The ladies room is clean and empty and we walk into the larger one. After the deed’s done, she gets up and needs my help holding her shirt while she buttons herself. My purse is hung on the hook. I usually never touch the lever with my hand, either the elbow or my foot. I did so, and the darned flush wasn’t well, flushing. I did it again, and it still didn’t do much. So to free my hand, I place the phone on the large toilet roll holder, wince and hit the flush again. This time it worked, and before I know it, munchkin’s opened the door and rushing out. She loves to wash and scrub and use the dryer, all the while preening like a well groomed peacock. I suspect that’s the reason she wants to use them restrooms outside home.
I grab my bag and run out with her, we wash and I answer her incessant questions. She asks too many questions these days and then she carries on the most amazingly perfect logical conversations to boot.
As we leave, I see a girl in a dark green tee with the restaurant’s logo on it walk in, talking into her cell. We leave her alone inside, and as we see the rest of us trooping outside, we join them and start walking out towards the hotel. There’s a high tower advertising Konica (I don’t remember the last tiem I saw a Konica adevrtisement!) that had the temp and time up. 9.26 pm and 17C it said in red. We wait, cross the road, start up the elevators. At the 16th floor as we get down, I realize with that wretched sinking abysmal feeling, that I don’t have my phone. Standing at the landing, I raid the husband’s wallet for the bill, and call. The manager lays half a ear, and asks for some Rosa to check. She returns in 10 seconds claiming there’s nothing there. I hit the elevator button again and sprint out across the road, through the cars piled close with the son at my heels. The tower said 9.30.
I check, I ask questions, I almost cry. The manager couldn’t care less. The waitresses clucked their tongues and one said “but it’s just a cell phone”. I say, you aren’t McD, you should know who’s in here and who went out, can you ask your other servers? It’s a public place ma’am, so may walk in and out. Let me call your phone. I know am losing the battle.
At this point, just like that, something in me gave in. Very out of character. I usually never ever give up without fighting, without kicking a fuss, without letting people know what the right thing ought be done, and losing without a fight. I didn’t do any of that. I am chalking it to my recent Zen way of living; attachments are the source of all misery. This was a physical small piece too.
I gave the husband’s number, my name and the hotel’s room number to a disinterested waiter who wrote on a piece of scrap bill and as he writes I know that this was hogwash. The paper would be thrown away and tomorrow would be a new day. I’d be just another tourist who couldn’t keep her belongings to herself and then kicks a fuss.
We return to gloom and a mildly upset husband. Was there a need to have it in your hand then? He does the right thing by returning to practical next steps. Calls ATT, suspends service, reports stolen, while I jump onto the daughter’s laptop and connect through the hotel’s wi-fi (which they charge a frikkin $13 CAD/24 hours!) into my gmail to change passwords, and then to find out what the hell one does when one loses an iPhone. Apparently tons, and a post on it is due soon. Just as well learn from one’s mistakes.
So, I think of all the things that I’ve lost with it. The emails, the contacts, the pictures and my facebook app. Ones that would give her access to a private me. Then I realize that the battery was down to 10% and it was a matter of minutes when it would either lock up (as I have a passcode) and then would die. So the data was safe. A little respite. I also remembered that the phone locks itself after three attempts (munchkin’d locked it enough times) but I did not enable the “after 10 attempts, wipe data clean” setting. This the son reminds me and shows it to me on his iTouch. I kick myself.
The pictures are what upset me most. I have very many pictures of munchkin and for the most part I tend to d/l them quick, but there were a few that I’d taken that evening, and some amazingly gorgeous rainbow pictures from the Maid of the Mist. There were some contacts that I know I didn’t sync yet. Small things, very little that’s un-recoverable, yet it left me with a feeling of being robbed. Being invaded upon. I know it’s silly considering I run an open blog of my life here, but I write what and how much I want, and no one can get further in until I allow. This was invasion. There’s a difference I’d like to think.
O well, it’s just a phone anyway. It isn’t like I lost a kid or got thwacked on the head or lose my wallet and not know for a few days. I do miss the silly thing next to me though. I realize that since am under a contract I have to continue to pay $30/month (for the data plan whether I use it or not) until the end of this year and then am eligible for an upgrade in January. Right now, I don’t have a cell phone. I should activate my backup $40 simple Nokia thing and use it for a rudimentary need in case of emergency, which I know as a mom and just being Rads, am very prone to. Crazy stuff happens with me, to me. :-)
Maybe I should go get the new 3Gs now, maybe I should wait, maybe I should just give it all up, would help in the process of scaling back anyway…. Maybe I should listen to the son when he says “mom, you need a break, you were hooked to that thing!” then again, it’s a case of the pot calling the kettle black. The boy is to his iTouch and I am to my iPhone. He is my son alright.
To the person who has my neat little thing encased in a bright fuschia (I asked for orange and I got pink) case, I hope you take good care of it and didn’t just go dump it somewhere. Highly unlikely of course considering the number of offers on Craigslist to jailbreak and unlock any orphaned iPhones lying around for folks to play finders-keepers. ATT got itself 2 customers on the same instrument for the next 4 months. Lucky them.
For me however, wire-less it is.