Lost in Alaska (Off the grid part IV) (Can you hear me now…)

No cell phone coverage, no smart phone, tweeting, texting, etc. I visited my brother in Alaska. It wasn’t quite the middle of nowhere, but you could see it from there. I was going to visit him for a week. I anticipated the social-media smart-phone withdrawal that I thought would happen.

Amazingly, it really didn’t happen. Fortunately, or un-fortunately as the case may be, you can get cell phone coverage just about anywhere.

My brother lives in Hoonah, Alaska, on Chicagof Island. One day, we went fishing in a small trout river, led down to it by a native guide, 75 yards from 5 grizzly bears, when I felt my phone vibrate in my pocket. (yes I had it with me). It was a text from a friend. Of course I responded. Don’t know if they got it right away, but there it was.

My brother has a boat, a big cabin-cruiser type boat, and we were in the middle of Icy Strait fishing (Google it). I thought, I wonder what would happen if I activated my google map and touched the pin that locates where you are? So I did it, and it gave me a big blue screen with the little blue dot flashing in the middle of the big blue expanse of Icy Strait. Apparently, we can get coverage almost everywhere.

Of course, there were some places where I couldn’t get coverage. But, I had really anticipated being kind of off-the-grid for a week. The thing I realized, of course, was that off-the-grid has become a choice, even in remote locations, rather than a necessity.

Based on the fact that we know that underdeveloped countries have almost universal cell phone coverage, much more developed than internet coverage, it follows that there may be only few places left that you actually can’t get on the grid. By my reckoning, probably only places that I would never be.


About whatshupp

I'm a project manager engaged with social media, technology, energy efficiency. A retired member of the United States Air Force, I've become a bit of a distance runner.
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