The words of Joni Mitchell “You don’t know what you got till it’s gone” certainly rang true for me as I pined daily for my dose of the information super highway and my gateway to the world. I never really appreciated just how much I rely upon the internet. I use it to read, learn, dream, watch, speak to others and now I even use it to write! I was like a bear with a sore head without it, bordering on depressed even. How did this happen to me? How did I become so engulfed that I became stressed without it?
Like I said, it sneaked up on me and for the most part I would like to say that I utilised this global computer network for real and informative purposes like, how to butcher a rabbit or discover more about history. In reality however, a great deal of my time was taken up reading inane stories about a so-called celebrity’s new veneers and getting caught up in “Important News” about Jennifer Lawrence’s hair??? After several days of moping and wondering how on earth I was ever going to catch up on my soap operas, I decided enough was enough, I must return to pursuits of days gone by. I must remove from my pit and rediscover my imagination. I must fill my days in more old-fashioned ways (huh, maybe I should try poetry?). A trip to the Book Store was prescribed and the husbands’ wallet was once more emptied on things that will last forever, naturally.
Armed with my new purchases we were going to educate and illuminate ourselves. We were going to stop staring at our I Phones and converse. Embarking excitedly on our first game of Scrabble I sincerely believed this. However, several arguments and delves into the Dictionary later at 2am patience finally wore thin. Scrabble is back in its box, rather like a dodgy Kebab, I am not sure it agreed with us…. Thank goodness then, that my other purchases have been wholly more agreeable. In my opinion there is little better than snuggling up on the sofa, with a soft throw and lights dimmed with Charles Dickens.
I love Dickens; his stories offer everything I could wish for from a novel, awakening my imagination like a juggernaut. It took me a year to read Bleak House!! (I’m blaming this on the internet takeover) I am determined to finish Nicholas Nickleby in record time. This is just what I needed to detoxify myself from Simon Cowell’s alleged Botox use or Kanye’s wrinkled leathers. For a few hours, I descended deeply into a menagerie of colourful characters imagining the rubicund and cadaverous Face of Mr Noggs, feeling the cold biting at my ears and nose as I travelled the length of the country atop a horse driven coach along with Nicholas and the small boys, smelling the streets of a London long gone. So this is what I did before the internet? Oh how I missed it and oh how it feels good.
Accompanying me and Charles, I am not ashamed to admit, is my other purchase the Oxford English Dictionary. They say (whoever they might be?) that it is impossible to count how many words there are in the English Language. It is fair to say that words get lost and replaced along the way. I am sure that my vocabulary is less rich than Mr Dickens, I strive to improve it and so I sit with a brick of a dictionary to do just that. My particularly favourite discovery so far is Hobbledehoy (a clumsy or awkward youth), what a fantastic word, who came up with that I wonder? Enjoying this occupation immensely I was unaware of the time, in comes the husband, putting the big lights on! (Men and Women like Chalk and Cheese, even when it comes to lighting!) “I’ve got the internet!!” he shouts. Surprised I wasn’t more excited by this announcement I put the Brick and Nicholas to one side, sighed and picked up my laptop.
Yeah, right! Who am I trying to kid! I was over the moon, ecstatic! I could speak to my parents on Skype and find out who killed Michael in Eastenders! Internet service is resumed and thankfully, the grizzly bear has departed. One thing that is not departing though is my date one afternoon a week, on the sofa, lights dimmed with Dickens, my imagination and brick. The internet is fantastic, I love it but living without it made me realise there other important ways to fill my days.
Do you have a favourite writer that awakens your imagination?