Blessings in disguise. The other side of the coin. When one door closes, another one opens. On the bright side…

I’m not sure how it happened, but a few of days ago both the music player and FM radio on my mobile phone simultaneously decided they’d buddy together and stop working. The radio no longer produces any sound whatsoever in earphone output or speaker. The music player’s volume is constantly at optimum level, so unless I want to be completely deafened by the sharp cymbal-clash to the opening of Haddaway’s What Is Love?, I’m afraid no in-ear entertainment is a go-go.

I was so used to plugging my ears each morning with a radio presenter’s idle chatter, or the oddly compiled music collection from various mobile phones over the years, that all of a sudden, I had nothing.

But it isn’t really nothing. In fact it’s a lot of something. I’ve found myself catching intriguing snippets of passer-bys’ conversations with their companions or children. I’ve anticipated the arrival of an emergency vehicle after clocking the siren pushing through the usual honks and engine roars of everyday-traffic several blocks away. I’ve heard the bark of a dog in a tower block above me, which was exactly the same pitch and length as that of the one featuring 16 seconds into Blur’s Parklife. 

I’ve also realised the visual and the auditory are intricately connected. I’ve always appreciated and been left in awe at the golden sunrises washing across the trees and city skyline as I strode along to Old Crow Medicine Show’s Wagon Wheel heading towards uni. But when you don’t have a soundtrack accompanying your journey, your mind becomes its own thought playlist. 

Instead of spotting something and vaguely pondering on it for all of a couple of seconds due to the music clouding over my thoughts, I can now properly take time to reflect on what I have seen, perhaps connecting it to an aspect of my life, or even making up my own imaginary scenario for the reason behind why something had happened that I had witnessed. 

I’m able to simply embrace life and breathe in my surroundings (if a little co2-polluted). I can roll an idea over in my mind which has begged for serious consideration and planning for some time, without the words and beat of a distraction stomping it out. 

Maybe soon I will get bored of my own thoughts, and begin to desperately crave a disturbance to my own conscious for the 15 minutes of my day where nothing else matters but from getting from A to B. 

For now though, I’m unplugged and unchanging.


p.s. Have a go and let me know. Could you go cold-turkey on technology? 

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