Saturday, April 7, 2018

Refllection #travelunplugged

In my previous post, I shared with anticipation my plans to take my Spring break vacation to the coast -- totally unplugged. You can read that post here. Truly, I couldn't wait. I had books to read, waves to see, and things to write. I needed time to just be, to rest, and to recharge. And I did just that. Here was the challenge from AFAR magazine:

"Commit to taking a trip between February and September and promise not to use your phone or computer. A trip of any duration to any destination, and the idea is truly to disconnect from technology. And then, when you reenter the digital realm, tell us about your experience via the hashtag #travelunplugged."

And so, as we left Petaluma, my last connection to the digital world was find ing my way to Bodega Road with my Google maps app after spending some time downtown Petalauma-- Sam visited a little comic book shop and I got a latte at a cool little non-Starbucks shop downtown.

Once we found Bodega Road, I switched my phone to airplane mode and planned to use it to take only pictures. I also had my journal in hand and really wanted to notice what changed, what I missed, and how I felt. A little experiment of sorts!

As we headed out to the ocean, passing farms and herds of baby sheep, I took a deep breath and enjoyed the ride. I knew the road would lead to Bodega Bay and we planned to grab a late lunch when we got there. A few hours later after an amazing cioppino we were on our way to Fort Ross.

I love Fort Ross, and it's a great place to unplug, There is no cell service, and the wifi in the lodge really doesn't reach to the room we stayed in, the one farthest from the main office and closest to the ocean. I didn't care, Sam would have liked a little wi-fi but he survived:)

As we drove in we wondered about finding tide pools and I said we could just ask in the lobby rather than googling it. Turns out the paper from the lobby had a list of tides, places to visit, places to eat, and more. It was fun going old school with just the paper!  During our trip we just meandered along highway 1 and discovered as we went along. It was the best!

I did try to take note of the things that I missed without being connected-- and it really wasn't much. Mostly I just found myself wanting to google stuff! I was missing the Naked Lady flowers that I normally see along highway 1, and I wanted to know when they bloomed.

So I wrote it in my notebook to google later. Late summer it turns out!

We ate scallops, and we talked about what the shell looked like. #googleitlater 

What about the underwater cable connecting California at Point Area to Hawaii? #googleitlater

We visited placed and it reminded me of people I know and love. Mendocino and the trips with my family each spring. The many bookshops and seeing The Art of War and Freakanomics and thinking of Jon Corippo.

I saw whales out the window of our room.

I read a big stack of books.

I took lots of pictures!

We raced to see the sunset each night as it dipped into the ocean.

Turns out, I didn't mis being connected at all, and was surprised how anxious I felt driving through Novato as I clicked my internet back on. 

Truly, it wasn't bad. Two messages from friends and one from a teacher wanting to know if the custodians were working over break.

Aaah, back to the real world. 

#travleunplugged I love you. Until we meet again. I can't wait!