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A Digital-Free Vacation

The house keys have been passed to our house-sitters, the dog has been sent to a pet penitentiary, and I am on vacation. I have fled the city (and the country, for that) with the wife and kids so we can spend a week with my parents, brother, sisters, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews and miscellaneous others. We will be braving the Virginia heat and pretty much taking over a state park.

While we are away we intend to avoid any kind of connectivity to the Internet and pretty much every device that looks or functions like a computer. This is getting more and more difficult to do and required quite a lot of Pharisaical negotiation. You don’t realize how much you depend on electronic devices and Internet connections until you consider getting rid of it all. Someone should write a book about that.

Here is what we came up with:

  • GPS: Permitted. Reading a map is so last century, so we’ll rely on the Garmin to get us where we’re going. Plus, how else can we stop at every Chick-Fil-A between here and there?
  • Mobile Phone: Permitted en route, forbidden on location. Our van isn’t getting any younger, so I’ve got AAA on speed dial. Once I get to the park I’m turning it off.
  • Computer/iPad: Forbidden. If I want to write (which you know I will) I’m going to have to rely on, um, what do they call it…Paper!
  • Internet: Forbidden. Of course there’s no wifi in the state park and I’ve got no data plan in the US, but I will still have to avoid the temptation to drive to a McDonald’s just to get in a quick email fix.
  • Kindle: Permitted. With five readers in the family, we’d have to pull a trailer full of books if we didn’t bring our Kindles.
  • iPods: Permitted en route, forbidden on location. The kids saved up their paper route money and bought iPods. They can listen to music and play Dragonvale in the car, but can’t use the iPods once we arrive.

Even though I will be offline, there will be plenty of new content here at the blog. Monday and Tuesday will bring a really interesting interview with R.C. Sproul; you won’t want to miss it. Later in the week there will be a word about the next Reading Classics Together (you’ll want to join in the fun this time), a book review and, of course, Free Stuff Fridays. There will be no A La Carte until I return. See you on the other side of this self-imposed blackout!


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