Thursday 29 June 2017

A week without Wi-Fi? It's not as easy as it sounds

Carol Hunt finds that logging off from the virtual world is a much more difficult task than it might at first appear

RUGGED ISLAND: A few days ‘unplugged’ on the beautiful west coast island of Achill can work its magic
RUGGED ISLAND: A few days ‘unplugged’ on the beautiful west coast island of Achill can work its magic
Carol Hunt

Carol Hunt

Remember Father Kevin, the depressed priest from Father Ted, played by Tommy Tiernan? On a visit to Craggy Island, Ted manages to talk him down from a building and cure him with the theme tune from Shaft, only for Kevin's depression to return when the bus-driver on the way home plays Radiohead.

Last week, I realised just how he felt. It wasn't the dismal voice of Thom Yorke that sent me reaching for the Prozac however, but the dulcet tones of Deputy Mick Wallace (no offence, Mick). Sitting on my own at the back of a (near) empty bus on the rainswept Island of Achill, the busman turned the radio dial to Morning Ireland, and suddenly I was assaulted by depressing talk of Nama, the Banking Inquiry, that never-ending Greek tragedy and, dear God, Bertie Ahern and the way he would mangle words at you.

For five days I had been "current affairs" free. For me, as a freelance opinion journalist, this is equivalent to going cold turkey off caffeine - bound to end in tears or/and existential angst. It wasn't a choice I made of my own volition - does anyone? But when a friend suggested taking all the local kids to her holiday home in Achill, I thought I'd better avail of the offer.

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