I have to get something off my chest.
To do so adequately, I must first mention two things:
1. In September last year, I made the transition from a pre-paid phone to a phone plan for the first time in my life. I shan’t name names, but my phone company starts with the letter “V” and rhymes with “Kodajone”. Since signing up with this company, I have experienced phone calls that drop out, texts that either never get through or do so months late (think I’m kidding? Three weeks ago, Helen received a text that I’d sent her in November 2010), a mobile Internet stick that gives me error messages so often I’ve taken to borrowing my parents’ Telstra mobile Internet stick instead, and on Easter Sunday not a single text or phone call could be made or received by my phone. In other words, my history with Kodajone =
2. During the month of March, I made some big and scary life changes to do with deferring my PhD and having to choose between two simultaneous wonderful job offers. The anxiety, terror and excitement surrounding these choices led to many extended phone calls and text conversations with wonderfully supportive friends and family members. Furthermore, in recent weeks several friends of mine have experienced upheavals of their own. I’ve been honoured to provide such friends with a listening ear and supportive shoulder, often via calls and texts.
Okay, that’s enough background for now. Let’s move on…
Today, I arrived home after work to find a bill in the mail. A Kodajone bill for the month of mid-March to mid-April. A Kodajone bill charging me $181.47.
I stood in the kitchen, wishing I could give Kodajone the stink-eye just like this:
In the time it takes to slit open an envelope and pull out a wad of papers, I’d magically changed my clothes from a colourful skirt and new boots to stiff grey crankypants. Crankypants that seemed so tightly moulded to my legs that I feared I’d never be able to take them off.
My mind kept calculating how many bars of fancy chocolate I could have bought with $181.47, or how much of a percentage of a flight to New York the amount was.
I honestly didn’t know it was possible for a phone bill to be that much money.
My feelings remained the opposite of this:
And then you know what? I realised something. I realised that every single person I’ve communicated with in this past month is incredibly important to me. I thought about the support I’ve given and received, the texts that have made me giggle at all hours of the day, the exhilarated phones calls I’ve made when the world has seemed sparkly and full of lip-synching miniature unicorns, and the friendships that have been strengthened through communication.
Every single person I’ve talked to this past month has been worth $181.47 and then some.
So guess what, Kodajone? You can take my money, but you can never take my awesome memories.
Or my chocolate. Sucks to be you, Kodajone.