We spent last week enjoying scenery and sunsets in Door County, Wisconsin. Driving up Lake Michigan’s western shore has become an annual trek for my wife and I.
Getting away from home, chores, appointments and to-do lists provides an opportunity to reflect, relax and re-charge. Ever-present road construction notwithstanding, the drive is not overly taxing. This is a good thing, considering that for the second time in three years, I made the trip twice to retrieve a forgotten medical necessity.
Despite 280 or so miles between Naperville and our vacation destination, the proximity to home was reinforced when, while unpacking, I noticed the clothes hangar taken from the closet was from Russell’s Cleaners in downtown Naperville. Despite a state line and a preponderance of Packer fans, I was still within familiar territory.
With the near ubiquity of WiFi access, early-morning sessions on the Internet allowed me to keep up with what was happening in the world. This also enabled taking care of important matters like paying bills, managing what might be left of my career, and seeing what friends and family were up to via Facebook and LinkedIn.
A true blessing, though, was the spotty cellphone service. Contrary to marketing pitches of electronics and communications companies touting the next great things in personal information access, I am a firm believer in not being connected 24/7. Knowing there were no bars on my phone established a sense of calm. Without the temptation to obsess over the latest updates, the phone stayed in my pocket, and I spent more time enjoying life.
Periodically the phone would synchronize to a nearby tower and announce waiting voicemail.
Once, in the midst of a wine tasting, my phone actually rang. Scrambling to answer, I discovered it was Naper Notify calling regarding road closures because of a gas line rupture. Naper Notify reached out several more times during the week as evidenced by voicemails on the home line along with several emails regarding issues that would have been a cause for concern were I at home.
Don’t get the wrong impression. I truly appreciate Naperville’s attempts through Naper Notify and to keep the community informed about municipal events, road work, changes in the trash pickup schedule and more.
If you have not signed up for the service yet, I encourage you to go to www.napernotify.com and register your email address or phones to receive the alerts. Choices for contact include cell phones, work phones, home phones, text messages, a smartphone app and email. According to the website, you can receive notifications about emergencies that may affect your home, your parents’ home, your workplace or your child’s school — basically any location within the boundaries of the city of Naperville of interest and importance.
This is a great service all residents should use. I just wish one of the available options was a vacation “kill switch.” If rumored cellphone service improvements happen in Door County, a means to reduce incoming calls will be appreciated.
Bob Fischer is president of the Naperville Area Homeowners Confederation. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.Tags: Social Media, vacation