I wrote a post last year expressing my feelings on the intrusion of technology in our lives. In that same post, I also expressed my admiration for technology, because I value how it has advanced our lives for the better.
My point at the time was to give some food for thought. To allow for a recognition that our tech doesn't have to consume us, it can play a part, but sometimes it's better to just put it down and live in the moment your experiencing. I didn't know it at the time, but I might have been expressing something that no longer exists in the modern world. On my recent trip to Thailand and Cambodia, I was presented with the reality that I may be a relic of the past, well at least in my desire to detach.
When I set out on a big trip my intention is to put down the technology. Turn off the smartphone or keep it stashed away so I can be present in the moment. And for the most part, I've stuck to this rule.
This time was different.
As we set off I noticed how everyone seemed to be glued to their small devices. It was in S. Korea, it was in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Siem Reap - everywhere!
It really hit me one day on the metro in Bangkok. A camera strapped to my body, a GoPro in my partners hands, and our smartphones on standby to capture additional footage. I was as guilty as those around me.
Interesting enough without it I wouldn't have captured this moment below that I have grown to love.
On the same metro ride that afternoon we were without phone service, we just sat and enjoyed the ride. I continued to look around and I noticed that I did not see a single face. Every single person, and I mean EVERY SINGLE PERSON was glued to their phones. Not one person was looking at one another. No one interacting. Just tiny smirks or zombie-like stares and hunched necks.
In that moment, I realized how much this technology has changed us. How much this technology has become a part of what we are and do. Leaving a smartphone at home for some may be as detrimental as leaving your keys in your car, your debit card at the bar. You panic, you rush to retrieve it, and when it's found you remember the gravity of its importance.
I'm stuck on this one. Stuck because I am young enough to have enjoyed the progression of how we got here, yet old enough to remember a time before it didn't exist.
Do we get more value on a personal basis because we're provided with content that fits our needs and desires?
Are we enslaved to a device that slowly draws us away from the world, negating the very purpose of the device?
Questions that I'm unable to find answers to.
Father, traveler, self trained creative, and spectator of life. The quest is to live a life intentionally, to construct a life of my choosing. I left the comfort of home at the age of nineteen and have been enjoying the Viaje as it unfolds ever since