Saturday, November 25, 2017

R2BC - The Digital Edition

No real reason to get up on a weekend morning....
My New Phone
I bought a new mobile phone. My old one was a cheap something from China that you had to shout down in order to be heard. And when I switched providers, it wouldn't receive the internet or allow Whatsapp or any other apps outside of my home wifi.

I was already fed up with it but then I had to go out of town on Friday, on the buses, to a place I'd never been before. I wanted to be able to check the bus routes and schedules, I wanted to see where I was on the map, I needed to be able to use my Gett Taxi app if necessary, I needed to be able to Whatsapp  the person I was going to and also the parents of the friend DD was going to after school. It was time for a new phone.

I went to an established chain of computer shops. I told them I wanted Samsung or LG and not some obscure make of phone that no one is familiar with. I didn't want to pay 2,000 shekels but, otoh, I wanted something that would last five years. I couldn't afford a new phone but they put it on  12 payments and it was Black Friday week, so I'm paying about 20GBP a month. (For one second I considered buying one for DD as well but then I remembered the tablet that was dropped on the floor after only six weeks and I came to my senses.)

I'm like a kid with a new toy. The various apps directed me to my cousin's door, showing my progress, exact location, and expected times of arrival for each stage of the journey. I know this isn't new, but it was new to me and I loved it.

DD's New Phone
DD finishes school on Friday at 11.45. She was then going to her youth club with the group of kids from school, and then going home with a friend. I had no idea what time I'd be home so I decided to 'lend' her the spare phone my mother bought for when she visits. It's not a smart phone but one of those revamped Nokia phones with telephone, clock, calendar, and camera.

DD was thrilled. She's been begging for a phone for ages. She was a bit disappointed that she wouldn't get Whatsapp on it as her friends are in groups, but she found a game (probably Space Invaders or Pac Man, LOL) so that made up for it somewhat.

I put in my phone number, her friend's mother's number and our very close friend (the friend DD sleeps over with when I go out). I told her that if she's ever in a situation where she can't get hold of me, she should call Sarit and she'll come and get you. I told her not to waste phone calls, it's a pay as you go and  if  you use up the time you won't be able to call anyone. "It's just for emergencies." I warned.

DD didn't miss a trick. "If it's for emergencies I ought to have it with me every day, don't you think?" She's got a point. When I called her on my way home, she excitedly told me that she'd found loads of things to do on the phone and that she has collected some phone numbers from her classmates. Oy vey.

By the end of the day I'd bought her a cover for it and change the contact name on my phone from 'Spare Phone' to 'DD'. Some things are inevitable.

And as a consequence of her having the phone, I felt comfortable letting her walk home from her friend's house on her own. She goes to and from school on her own already but we live opposite the school. This was from a few roads away with a few roads to cross. It was really fine. I've been watching her cross the road to school, from my balcony, and she's got it in terms of being sensible, cautious and defensive.

So after I'd already told DD that she can phone Sarit in an emergency. I texted Sarit and said I hoped that was ok. I also said I'd do the same for her son, i.e. go and get him in a taxi if he needed me. I won't print her reply but we exchanged lots of hearts and kisses and expressions of friendship and family. It left me feeling all warm and fuzzy and thankful to have such a special friend close by.

The Icing on the Cake
As a by-product of all this shifting around of phones, DD got my old smart phone without the sim card to use as a tablet for playing some games and watching You Tube as it still works on the home wifi. She's not had access to a screen, other than dvds on the tv, since she broke her new tablet after six weeks and then managed to break my spare laptop.

The Laptop Dilemma Solved
I know how she broke my spare laptop. She played games on it and was too hard on the keyboard. I'm getting it fixed but I'm reluctant to let DD anywhere near it. Otoh, she needs access to a computer. I thought of buying a desk top which would be sturdier but we live in a small apartment and I really don't want to give up the space for a desktop.

My cousin's son suggested I attach an external keyboard to a laptop for DD to bash away at. Such a simple solution I'm embarrassed not to have thought of it myself.

I have joined the other cheerful bloggers on the linky over at Mich's Mummy from the Heart.


  1. it sounds like the tech situation is all falling into place and my girls are always badgering me for a phone but they'll get one next summer when they head up to Secondary school, nothing flash mind you. Have a great week, Mich x

    1. That seems to be the deciding factor - when they start travelling to and from school by themselves they get a phone. Nothing flash is increasingly hard to find though as the most basic mobiles seem to have everything.

  2. Raphaela (age 8) has been trying to negotiate her way to a cell phone since first grade. One of her close friends had one at age six, for no apparent reason. I told Raphaela that she would get a phone when she needed one, in terms of her life circumstances. Even then I don't plan on giving her a smart phone. Raphaela is also trying to negotiate a later bed time., and I keep reminding her that she is genetically programmed to wake up at 5:30 am...

    1. Where do they learn how to negotiate so well? DD has been negotiating since she was about three!

  3. It's always fun to get a new phone and realise all the wonderful things it can do, isn't it? It sounds like you've solved the other techie issues too, and lovely to read how they are changing DD's life xx

  4. It's true, every month seems to bring her more independence and maturity.

  5. Its wonderful to have tech close to hand - I love my iPhone (thank heavens for life assurance payouts!). So glad she is now able to have more freedom. My son never remembers his phone though... He has bought a desktop as better for gaming but it is big...

    1. I have to admit that I'm happier for her to have more freedom now that she has a phone.