Among things that shouldn’t worry us these days are loss of material owing to a crashed hard disk, inability to get in touch with a friend, getting lost while looking for an address and being held up in airport security because there is an undeclared half-bottle of after-shave lotion in your hand baggage. Yet, somehow I have struggled with all of the above. I mean, the cloud, social media, maps and airport security rules are there to help us so we can laugh in the face of such things as a hard disk crashing, while we attempt to call a friend at the wrong airport.
I still get lost, for apart from being geographically challenged, I am also unable to read maps that present themselves so conveniently on our phones (the two usually go together, I am told).
My hard disk crashed recently, and here for the benefit of those who are likely to undergo the same experience soon are the dos-and-don’ts of the situation (based on what I did and didn’t do):
1. Switch your computer on and off till your arm drops off. If this doesn’t work, call up a friend and cry on his shoulder.
2. Panic. This is allowed if you are above the age of 30, and think that your life has come to an end because all history has been wiped out.
3. Shout at the next person who calls up on the phone. Well, someone has to pay for the disaster, and it might as well be the chappie who is trying to sell you insurance at what he calls a "premium price".
4. Don’t call up your son to tell him what happened. Children have little patience with parents who nod their heads when they are explaining how to keep everything secure and then run to them after not following instructions.
5. Promise yourself that if only a combination of divinity and your local technician fixes everything, you will never make the same mistake again. And try to remember the prayer you recited the last time this happened.
6. Pretend that you didn’t lose anything important, assuring yourself that some time in the future, technology would have advanced to literally pluck out of the air every single thing you wrote and saved, including laundry bills and movie tickets.
7. Check the cloud, just in case unknown to you, someone had saved all your stuff there. Faith, after all, can move mountains. And clouds are more easily moved.
Most families have had a similar hard disk problem. They will give you the same advice they give truck drivers who have crashed into their gardens: back up!
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