Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Art of Patience

I am writing tonight's entry on my mother's computer in Small Town, Ontario. I grew up in this town, population 17,000 according to the sign (but really, they just stopped counting and don't want to be officially known as big enough to be called a city, so in reality there are probably thousands and thousands more who don't get official recognition on the "Welcome to..." sign at the edge of town). I like coming back to visit, not just to visit my mom, but also because my favourite clothing store in the whole world is here with Cheryl my personal stylist ready to help me with the perfect wardrobe. (Of course, I can't tell you the name of the store because if everyone knew how great it was, there'd be no clothes left for me to buy and as it is already, I'm always just a little bit out of luck getting the full selection of sizes, styles and colours whenever I go. Clothes fly off the shelves at this place and they can't get any more, even though it's February and you're buying a swim suit that you won't be able to wear for at least another four months.)

There is a dark side to this town though. A dirty secret that people are reluctant to talk about. But I must reveal it here and bring it out into the open.

Sadly, unfortunately, shamefully, it must be noted that high speed Internet service has not yet arrived in this town, which is situated about 1.5 hours drive from Toronto. Or maybe it's available and my mother has simply chosen not to get it. For whatever reason, she only has dial up service.

The horror. The horror.

I have always considered myself to be a patient person. It is only when one is faced with the trauma of waiting...waiting...waiting for the phone number to connect (why on earth does it make that annoying sound???) and then waiting...waiting...waiting for each page to load that I realize I'm not as patient as I think I am. Somehow I have become so used to the instant gratification of high speed Internet that my brain simply doesn't know what to do with itself for the long, long periods of time it takes for this computer to search out the information or talk to the satellites or run interference with the groundhogs that control the underground cables or whatever it is that it needs to do in order to give me access to the Google page I want or log in to the Blogger website.

I don't mind waiting in line. I waited in traffic in this town today without complaint while four separate cars tried to get in or out of the parking lot of the liquor store - I was only driving by the liquor store, you understand, I just wanted to get past it but two cars wanted to go in and two cars were trying to get out - one by reversing out and almost hitting the person beside them who was driving forward but turning left so they ended up behind the reversing car...yes, tragedy was narrowly averted here today as I was to witness. I have been waiting 47 years now for the love of my life to show up and apparently I'm going to have to be patient a little while longer in that regard as well.

But there is a limit to my patience and I now know it has to do with Internet speed. Dammit, I want my Google ready and waiting whenever I want it. These poor souls don't even know it doesn't have to be this way, they think this is "normal". Of course, they also think the way they drive is normal too, so maybe that explains a few things, now that I think about it...

In the meantime, I'll just keep waiting...and waiting...and waiting...

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