Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Devices and desires

Laptop Screen Capture Device

I talked myself in to a new and extra smartphone for my recent travels. The reasoning went thus

  • there is no EE cover in Iona
  • (How would spouse manage without updates from me? He doesn't see Facebook like all the rest of my family who know my every move)
  • if I had a fall on a deserted beach who would know it?
  • the camera on the Z xperia models has 20MP and comes as a best buy in Which
  • I will need a good camera next year when I go up the Rhine
  • I can teach spouse how to use a smart phone if he has one to practice on
  • an incognito phone could be a wise buy when one is digitally hiding from relatives who are text crazy
So there it was and now is reality. The tiny Isle of Iona has had after all these years to lay down a
helipad next to the Fire Station because of the increase in accidents and the need to fly people off. I was brought up a serious youth hosteller and never would walk anywhere alone without telling someone my destination.  This last summer a young man lay for hours  in Iona without being able to contact help. A whistle might have helped. My smart phones have emergency access, but only my new O2 Xperia Z compact would have got a signal. I keep reading articles  urging the necessity for good signal coverage across Great Britain, and I stand too with that plea. 

And so I have been remembering my teenage years , the thick mist that descended on Scarth gap Pass from Buttermere as I walked right over into Wasdale past that best of all lake District Youth Hostels ,Black Sail Hut.  We walked , my sister Sue and I , with her friend Julia, from cairn to cairn across the passes, and had to ring the warden of the last YH to let him know we had arrived safely . In the 1960s even the rucksacks seemed heavier and the boots were a nightmare 'wear in'. I used to walk round the garden for hours having spooned the backs trying to soften the leather. Even then elastoplasts were always carried for heels. This year , my walking boots went on in the shop and walked easily ever since. 

This year I was with my other sister Christine. Sometimes the weather was vile in Iona  but we were dry and warm with our 21C wet weather gear. Even when the wind was howling , the ferry safely moored home behind The Island of Women and not running because of the weather, we were safe and cosy on the Machair in Skerryvore, with our 21st C comforts, TV, and Telescope and central heating, and a great signal for EE in the corner of the kitchen, and wifi for the O2 everywhere else.
The islanders do not get anxious about travel , if the ferry cant run they just get a text message , and subscribing to Calmacs updates kept us all in the loop. If the ferry wasnt going to get us off Iona , certainly no one would be coming on the island wanting our beds.
The BBC weather app is so accurate. I knew to within half an hour when there was going to be a rain storm.
The Google Sky app was great on our first night, as there was a clear sky and I could view the unpolluted sky .

Night of 23rd Oct looking E from Iona 
In Steinbecks great novel Sweet Thursday ,when Docs friends at the Palace Flop House buy him what they think is a new microscope, but is the largest telescope the whole goddam catalogue. Doc says that 'it doesn't matter whether you look up or down as long as you look!'

No comments:

Post a Comment