Saturday, June 09, 2012

Breaking habits

I readily admit to being a creature of habit. Not that I am inflexible. When I tire of a habit I drop it easily and move on to another one.

What I do not like is being obliged to give up a habit!

No, I am not suddenly faced with the abjuring Marlboro Gold or Chateau Tetrapak, heaven forfend!

But for many a year now I have fed my two-paperbacks-per-week habit at Hugendubel, Munich's excellent English-language bookshop. Today they close for ever and I made my last purchase of 'booky books' there yesterday. Browsing the Kindle store is not the same.

Yesterday also heralded the end... for a good while... of another  precious habit. The Long Desk is what my daughter and I call our Skype-enabled communications mode. We both have our chat window open as long as we are online and it is as if we are in the same room, working on our own stuff at opposites ends of a desk. 

Her second year of studies in Maastricht came to an end yesterday. No more speculations about what Baudrillard, Foucault or Bentham really meant... no more snarky comments about the hypotheses of Sherry Turkle or Naomi Klein... no more sudden realizations that yet again Danah Boyd has got it about right. Not to mention spontaneous exchanges of raunchy music videos or silly cat pictures.

No 'phwup' alert when she goes online in the morning... or whenever she wakes... given that her coffee machine and her iBook are fired up more or less simultaneously.

All that I shall sorely miss. Although having her back in Munich for some summer weeks will be a big compensation. Hugs will no longer be little Skype avatars but real for a while.

And then in the autumn the 'Long Desk' will be a habit once again, then bridging the kilometres between Munich and Barcelona.

By then I may even have become accustomed to Kindle.

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