Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Eating Fruit

I'm currently sporting a Blackberry Curve 9320. Although this phone is brand new out of the box, and was released less than two months ago, compared to my WP7, which was released 1.5 YEARS ago, I feel like I've gone back in time.

I remember 3 years ago (almost on the dot...), when I arrived in Boston and was absolutely ecstatic about owning my first smart phone (in red, no less). It was also a BB Curve.  I remember being on the Green T line that doesn't go underground and downloading music to use as my ringtone (unlimited data) and feeling excited about any app that existed. And I remember when Adam got his Bold, and I was jealous of his being able to change the themes while my Curve crashed when I tried. I remember chatting everyday on email, SMS, BBM and being so happy with my phone. I remember when all my friends came to Boston to see us and we stacked the BlackBerries because we all had one.

I especially remember when Adam asked me to switch to the Windows Phone, and I stood in AT&T, almost unwilling to budge when he said, go play with the first Torch that just came out and see whether or not you want it. I tried turning it on in the store - it took about 15 minutes to switch on. And then lag lag lag. I was defeated and the new touch screen phone was in my hands. Even a few days after I had the WP7, I still went on Craigslist to see if anyone would trade me a Torch for my phone, and I had no bites (those ppl who read my post are probably regretting it).

And now, 1.5 years later, I'm back on the BB and I'm finding it difficult to understand what was wrong with my brain at that time. Here are the following problems:

  • Screen size
  • Difficult to navigate
I really didn't realize how spoiled I have been with my WP7. I've only seen maybe 2 apps ever crash. It never lags, and it has never froze.  Everything is super quick and there's not icon that appears every time the BB is trying to process something. 

Realistically speaking though, had I never had a touch-screen phone that worked so beautifully, I would have been ecstatic about this "upgrade." It has crashed a little less than my old curve, it has more apps, and it hangs a little bit less. 

At the end of the day, a phone is a phone. It does everything that it should do so I should be grateful for it. I am looking forward to December, when I'm back in Canada on my 1.6 year old WP7 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Toute Seule

Today marks the third week since I officially "moved" to Paris.
Funny in the last few weeks it never really felt like I left "home."
In some ways it just felt like another trip out - especially since the three weeks was broken up with a week in Stockholm so it didn't really feel like Paris is now my "home."

This morning, I received an Email from IT telling me my French mobile is "ready."
As soon as I went to pick it up from IT, I called Virgin Mobile to cancel my current month-to-month plan and switched it to the prepaid plan, rendering my old phone to be completely disconnected while I'm out of Canada.

I didn't really pay any attention to my new phone until I was off work, which was nearly 8pm. This was when I realized that data for my new phone was not working. At that moment, I felt a little hollow. I am now completely "disconnected" from Toronto.

And it's not as if my old cell phone was roaming the entire last three weeks (I only allowed data when I was desperate) or that I couldn't connect my old phone to WiFi - but the idea that my main French phone was not a window for me to connect to a life that i was so perfectly comfortable with, made that Canadian life feel officially out of reach.

I'm not entirely sure whether a part of this was due some disagreeable events with my relocation that transpired, or if the phone really was subconsciously symbolic to me, but, tonight, I am feeling homesick.

I feel pretty alone out here in a land where even the natural facility at which I am most apt--language--is foreign to me. Nevertheless, what is, perhaps, the most unfortunate, is that this must not come as a surprise to anyone, not even myself.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Just Another Day

Friday after work, a coworker of mine and I went to hang out in the La Marais area. After work, we got into her car and drove from Suresnes to the 3rd Arr. On our way, we passed by the Seine, Grand Palais, Champs Elysee, Arc de Triomph, and as we drove across the roundabout of the Arc, sitting in traffic while my coworker complained about the density of Paris, it hit me that I now live here. From now on, every single day, I am going to be passing by these grandiose landmarks people read about in books, see in movies, watch on TV, listen to on the radio, as though they are street lamps or parking metres. "In fact" (the phrase the French love to use), I see the Eiffel Tower from my terrace across my bed, glittering at the hour, and the golden dome of Les Invalides glowing in the dark from the terrace outside of the living room.

Today, I decided to go to a Korean grocery store in Little Japan. The closest direct stop for me via the metro is 10 minutes at Opéra. Coming out of the Metro and seeing "the most famous opera house in the world" right in front of my face while knowing that not only was it not my destination and just another building i pass by on my way to go grocery shopping, but also that i will be seeing this monumental infrastructure on a regular basis, is quite a disconcerting feeling. 

And so, to mark this monumental moment, from hereon, when i refer to these landmarks, they shall be written with lower case. Bon matin eiffel tower! Bon soir arc de triomph et champs elysee! Douce nuit, les invalides!