A Week in College Without a Laptop
I recently had the misfortune of having a broken laptop. Coincidentally, a friend, “Jason”, also broke his laptop at the same time, inspiring this post on surviving college without laptops.
Day 1: Denial
Despite all evidence to the contrary, both of us believed that our laptops weren’t done. We thought “if we leave it alone for a while, maybe the problem will go away.”
Day 2: Realization
The problem, of course, did not go away. Now both of us were stuck with a new reality: we don’t have computers. Problems start to manifest themselves as we think about future papers and assignments and things we need those laptops for. Now we start asking around, seeing if friends have any ideas on cheap fixes or maybe a spare computer. I start using my Kindle Fire to access the internet and we borrow other computers for short periods of time to check email.
Day 3: Short Term Solutions and Long Term Solutions
By now, I am starting to get used to not having a laptop. I’ve developed a plan on how to function. After class I go to a computer lab for an hour checking on assignments, reading, Facebooking, getting my daily internet fix. I use Google docs to start writing papers so my work is saved. I use my Kindle a lot. It is slow and frustrating but living alone, it’s the most practical option. Jason is luckier. He asks his roommate and his housemates for help. Living with 5 other guys may stink at times but at least there are 5 other computers to borrow. We both go to Best Buy to see our options. My computer is salvageable. Jason’s isn’t. I leave my laptop for the Geek Squad to fix. Jason starts looking at new laptops.
Day 4: The End
I come to class late because I had to print my response paper at the lab. I forgot to allow extra time to walk over to the lab, wait for an open computer, and print. Luckily, printing is still free, though I’m approaching my limit. Jason calls his parents who let him buy a laptop for himself. He starts to research his options. I get a call from Best Buy saying my laptop is fixed. Hallelujah!
Jason still doesn’t have a laptop of his own. For now, he’s been borrowing his roommates’ computers and making do with that. He has ordered a new one which should be coming soon. Surviving college without a laptop was a challenge. I relied a lot more on my laptop than I thought previously. It wasn’t a disaster but it was definitely an inconvenience.
Photo courtesy of Tim Sheerman-Chase via Flickr (CC BY2.0).