I’m posting today from Mackinac (pronounced Mackinaw) Island, Michigan, where the smell of horse manure or fudge fills the air, depending on which direction you turn. If you’ve never been – and, really, you should go -- it’s an island that has committed to forgetting time, despite the Wifi access at the hotel. No cars are allowed here, so people get about either by taking a horse-drawn taxi, walking, or biking, mostly on single speed bikes, known affectionately as “cruisers.” At times, over the last few days, I’ve felt like I was channeling Almira Gulch from “The Wizard of Oz.”
In fact, I’m so out of it right now that I only just learned that Katie Holmes is planning to divorce Tom Cruise. And, earlier this morning, my husband and I had a debate about whether it was 8:43 or 9:43. We’ve completely lost track of time
But the contemporary world intruded yesterday morning, during a smoothie run just after the family had rented bikes for the day. My husband went to take a picture of the rest of the group with his Sony Cybershot – which, compared to my Android’s phone, is anything but. As I was smiling for the camera, a little voice within started to criticize the exercise as pointless, or at the very least complicated, because, man, was it going to be a bitch to post something from his camera to Facebook. No built-in 3G or Wifi access? What’s the point of that?
And then it hit me: I wasn’t channeling Almira Gulch these last few days as much as I was channeling Madonna in her 1991 documentary: “Truth or Dare.” If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I give you the words of then-boyfriend Warren Beatty, who commented about the constant presence of Madonna’s camera crew: “Why would you say something if it's off-camera?”
Yes, I’ve gone from taking photos for posterity, to be shared among a small group of family and friends, to feeling that everything should be shared with everyone, as anyone who is a friend of mine on Facebook knows. My cell phone photos over the last 10 days from Wrigley Field, Wisconsin and various places on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan now dominate my Facebook page. While I’m certainly not as prolific about posting personal photos as some people, for me, this new trend in my life is just a tad disturbing. It also may explain why my eight-year-old daughter, halfway through the trip, suddenly became camera-shy.
Can’t I just enjoy my vacation in isolation? Apparently, since I’m sharing my thoughts on this, the answer is no.