Plop! It finally happened. My iPhone fell in the toilet. My husband has warned me many times about keeping my cell phone in my pants' back pocket and I continued to do so. It has fallen on the floor around the bowl too many times to count, but never before did I make the "bulls eye shot." I was about to use the toilet and began my preparations when I heard a splash and realized that my iPhone had fallen directly into the toilet bowl! Although I retrieved it quickly, it got wet and stripes of all colors appeared on it as the screen slowly faded to a blank. I emailed my sons to ask what I should do. Their responses were peppered with choice words about my mental abilities and varied from "get a new phone" to "put it in a bag of rice." I chose the latter as I had read about this technique and I wasn't eligible for a new reduced price phone. To my sons' chagrin I maintain a fairly healthy household and we only have brown basmati rice in our home. So I sacrificed a full bag of brown rice and placed my phone in it. It has been there for 18 hours.
When this happened I made promises to my higher order power that resembled those I made as a young woman. There were times when I drank too much and was terribly sick and hung over. I promised to never drink again (to excess) if I could only feel normal again. Yesterday I promised to never keep my phone in my back pocket, if it would only dry off and function again.
This is the first time that my phone suffered a drowning, but not the first time that it has run away. At least once a week I "lose" my phone and each time I experience significant panic because my phone contains my life. Although it is password protected, it is my lifeline to the world and my schedule. Each time this happened in the past I was able to call it from another phone and follow the ring to find it. My phone has found its way beneath my car seats, deep in the cracks of the cushions of my sofa, and even hidden under the newspaper I was reading. But this time it is serious. I can't call it and I do know exactly where it is. It is in a bag of brown basmati rice.
Like an addict, I feel drawn to take it out of the bag and test it, but I have been advised by my tech savvy sons to let it dry for 24 hours. Since I can't use it for a whole day I've decided to consider this a "staycation" following the example of people who disconnect from their phones while on vacation (or the Sabbath) and find it calming. It's not working like that for me though. Like so many other people I use my phone for most everything. It is extraordinary how much information our phones contain. It is my timekeeper and wakes me up in the morning. It is my personal secretary, the place where I keep notes with my ideas for blogs, recipes, books to read, and anything else important. I check the weather, get email, and schedule appointments. I snap photos and take videos on my phone. I can't capture all the cute poses that my animals assume and I miss that.
My iPhone is also my main means of communication -- at home and on the go. I text, email and facetime numerous times a day. I keep in touch with friends and family near and far using my phone and its apps. I store all my contacts from doctors to my sons' numbers in it and don't have to memorize anyone's number. All I do is click on their names. I feel safest when my phone is with me as it is programmed to call emergency personnel if needed. And conversely, I do not feel comfortable if I don't have my phone with me. So, forget about relaxing without it.
In the excitement over the wet phone I almost burned my house down. It was only when the smoke alarms started screaming and I realized the house was filled with smoke did I remember that I had left vegetables cooking on the stove and had taken a brief detour to the restroom that turned into a major issue. I turned on the exhaust fan and opened windows, but the smoke still swirled around the house. The vegetables were blackened and scorched beyond redemption. No dinner and no phone.
In short my iPhone keeps me connected to the world and I feel naked without it. All is not lost though. There's always the cloud. The cloud has always been a mystery to me and I have never understood exactly where it is. I do know that it stores all my data -- somewhere -- and that when I do get my phone back my life will still be there.