Unplugged? Learning when to disconnect from technology


Typically when I write about electronics., I am just raving about them. However, today I want to talk about something a little bit different. It’s the old adage about overdoing electronics.

Recently I went hiking in the Smoky Mountains. I love a certain area there which is comprised of the back-country in the lower regions. You don’t see a whole Lotta people out there, and honestly sometimes when you do you wished you hadn’t.

I think the funniest story that I ever had from back-country hiking in the Smoky Mountains was a day when I came across some horse riders. I didn’t know what horse riders were, however, the people that I passed on my way up to my designated campsite told me I wouldn’t go up there if I were you.

To be honest with you, the guys that told me that seemed a little rough. I thought I’d take my chances with the horse riders and see what I come up with. When I got there there was probably seven or eight horses in a mule. What I didn’t expect to find was a subculture that I had never anticipated. I never met guys like this. They were rough and tough and they could drink some beer. The first thing they did was grill my about the possibility of me being a park ranger.

They had a canned speech about park rangers and how they hated them. It seemed to take a lot of convincing and a couple of guys from Tennessee assured them that I was not a park ranger. I guess because I was clean-cut and well spoken I had the characteristics that made a park ranger.

A little confessional is that I always wanted to be a park ranger. I just knew that there was no money in it so I had to do something else.

Back to the story‚Ķ After these guys were sure that I wasn’t a park ranger, they invited me to eat (most likely illegal) fish that they had pulled out of the creek.
At least I assume it was illegal because if it weren’t illegal then I don’t think they would be as concerned about me being a park ranger. Just my hunch. I really know nothing about all that.

These guys began telling me stories about these forests and how they loved the forest. I was surprised when the guy told me to go get my bag next to the Sycamore tree. I wondered how he knew that that was a sycamore tree in the tent was over by the Papal tree.

I’d soon learn that these guys were lumberjacks. That’s why they knew all about trees. That’s what they did was clear these hills.

The one guy told me that the worst day and his whole life was the day that a tree fell on his dad. He told me confidentially that his dad really never recovered 100% after the tree landed on him. He had severe internal injuries. He had to use a chainsaw to cut his dad out from the tree. His dad was already unconscious.

He told me how his cell phone didn’t work in those mountains. He ran to the nearest house which was over a mile away he says and when he got there he threw up on the porch.

I don’t mean to be graphic, but I just want to impress upon you how hard this man had run to save his father’s life.

They did save his life and he was there at the campsite that day. However, the one that wasn’t so lucky was that grandfather.

Apparently the grandfather actually built a house in those mountains. The remnants of that house including a chimney stack still stands straight at one of the campsites. They told me they hated the government because the government had seized their land through eminent domain.

Their only concern was for their grandfather to be able to return to his home before he died. Unfortunately they could not get any motor vehicles back to that area it was forbidden.

So, the grandpa never got to see his home again. And it’s this reason that they had severe animosity towards Park Rangers; any government official for that matter.

But really the point of the story is simply that having a time where you do not have cell phone coverage can sometimes be the greatest life lessons that you can ever experienced.

The story taught me a lot about hate, a lot about revenge, and a lot about technology.

I just wanted to share it with you so that you would remember to turn off the electronics every once a while and to unplug from the matrix so that you can enjoy life and have some neat stories to share with your generations to come.