I'm not sure if I've ever been so dependent on a computer before.
Without it, I can still read, still knit, still talk to people, and still write long-hand. But my computer was my one way of keeping in touch with people who weren't in Japan. It was what I used to look things up and explore. It was both how I planned and how I remembered.
I was good. I upgraded the operating system when I got it, but that was all. I never tried to install a different linux distribution or change the BIOS. I behaved, and left the computer alone. And the thanks it gave me was an error message this morning.
This is the first time in years I've been somewhere without easy access to another computer. The last time that happened I think I only had the laptop for thirty minutes at a time because my I was sharing it with both my siblings. So, when something goes wrong, it's that much harder to fix.
Once I did get access to another computer, I realized that there really wasn't any fixing to be done. The error message I was getting was complaining it couldn't boot from a network connection. A network connection is the last thing it tries. By the time it got there, it had already given up on the hard drive.
Still, if it had to choose a time to break, it chose a decent day. I wasn't planning on using it that much over the next few days. I don't appreciate not having the option, but there's very little I need to do that still requires a computer.
It has given me appreciation for other things, though. My phone developed problems three days after being in Japan. Today, I found they were all gone, and it was in great condition after I charged it. There's free wireless in the lobby that it can connect to, and it has other applications on it that can allow it to function as a decent make-shift computer.
I also have justification for carrying around a paper notebook now. Notebooks don't spontaneously combust, and it would take at least a week of solid writing to fill every page I have left. I don't like writing things I know I'm only going to need to retype later, (mainly because I hate retyping it later) but there are a lot more options in a blank sheet of paper then there are in a flashing text box.
I'd never been so dependent ona computer. But now that my computer is effectively a decorative brick (one of the hollow ones that decorates play sets) I'm disscovering that that I don't need to be.