Those wonderful invisible tubes – Day 23 of 30 Days of Indie Travel – Technology

BootsnAll 30 Days of Indie Travel

“The Internet…. It’s a series of tubes.” — Ted Stevens, U.S. Senator

Day 23 of 30 Days of Indie Travel Project, from BootsnAll

Photo by Sleestak -
Note to the late Sen. Stevens, may goddess blog your soul: not how the Internet actually works.

Prompt #23: TECHNOLOGY

“Where would today’s travelers be without smartphones, GPS, iPods, iPads, or even the internet? Share one item of tech you can’t live without or tell us how technology has changed the way you travel.”

Those wonderful invisible tubes

Oh Internet, I’d wrap up all your tubes and pack you in my rucksack, if I could. Thank goodness I don’t need to.

I got my first email account as a college freshman—before many businesses had one. Within a couple of years, I was using the Internet for research, travel planning, banking, you name it. Hell, while my college didn’t have in-room Internet access, I got my room hooked up by baksheeshing a friend who did work study in our IT department.

Yessiree, I tell you, them ol’ tubes n’ me go way way back. Yee-haw.

Traveling without the Internet? It’s easier to imagine, I dunno, using a rotary-dial phone. Or faxing something. From checking email at Internet cafes in Lhasa, Tibet, to booking a plane ticket to the U.S. Pacific Northwest from my bedroom in Edinburgh, Scotland, I’ve lost track of the number of ways online technology has simplified and enhanced my travels:

  • Digital photos and photo sharing. Flickr makes it so much easier to share photos online. And not having to carry film? My lighter pack and I love it.
  • Email. Oh my, oh my. From emailing a contact to reaching out to someone whose name I got from a friend or colleague, it’s been amazing to see how email can make it easier to smooth out travel arrangements. BTW, my email is anthony at antsaint dot com.
  • Social media. I loves me some Twitter (@antsaint). When planning trips, I’ll usually suss out hashtags for our destination, and surf the tweet river for interesting tidbits and recommendations. And via Facebook, it’s easy to keep abreast of many of the people we’ve befriended on our travels.
  • Laptop. Sometimes, Jodie and I take a laptop. Whether for writing, in-room research, or pulling photos off the digital camera, our lightweight MacBook earns its keep.
  • Mobile devices. Neither of us packs a smartphone at this point, but Jodie’s iPod Touch has proven its worth many times over. Figuring out a bus route? Check. Finding our way so her husband’s lack of direction doesn’t have us winding up in Alberta when we’re trying to get to Vancouver Island? Check.

Oh Internet, I adore thee. All those tubes have helped life in so many ways. With technology advancing even faster, and finally achieving true mobile, personal scale now, it’s going to be fascinating to see how our kids use technology—what they teach us, what they can’t imagine not having.

See all of Anthony St. Clair’s travel blog posts for 30 Days of Indie Travel »

See all 30 Days of Indie Travel blog posts »

More like this: Urban Fantasy and Travel Stories from Rucksack Press »

What is the 30 days of indie travel?

BootsnAll 30 Days of Indie TravelEvery day in November, the BootsnAll Travel Network is inviting bloggers from around the world to a daily blogging effort designed to reflect on how our travel experiences over the last year (or whenever) have shaped us and our view of the world. Bloggers can follow the prompts as strictly or loosely as we like, interpreting them in various ways and responding via text, photos or video posted on our own blogs. More information: Join the 30 Days of Indie Travel Project »

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