Do I like having the ability to refill my vitamins and groceries at the touch of my computer? You bet I do! I am the prime example of someone who relishes the sheer luxury of being able to finish my Peapod or Instacart order of groceries on my IPad while heading to a meeting in a cab and wait for the delivery of items I have been too lazy to pick up at the store during the work week (milk, anyone?) later that evening when I finally drag myself in the door. Amazon Prime? I think I have a special place in their data base for being the master of finding all of the “odd needs” …back door hooks, Harry Potter gifts for Kelsey, toothbrush head replacements and things that I no longer need to run to the store for because with Prime, I know I’ll have it shipped out within 24 hours…scarily there have been times on the weekend where the item has been left on my front porch that same day. Almost like magic! Clothing? I cannot remember the last time I found any joy in heading into a mall and actually shopping without a mission in mind. And when I do have a mission, why bother wandering the mall and ending up disappointed when I can pull up an electronic device and have 15 different choices for yoga pants to select from? I do worry about my ability to justify that the money I save in gas is simply replaced by the shipping energy exerted but usually that justification trumps all – along with convenience.
However, I did have my faith in collision of technology and services rattled just a bit last night. This time of year is filled with industry and Washington type holiday parties and this week has been in the thick of things. Heading back to Arlington last night, I used my Uber app to catch a ride back to the office and was eventually picked up by my driver, Gregory. As I made my way into his car and we started our journey back over the Potomac River, Gregory informed me that it was his very first day driving for Uber and I was his third ride! Well, that exciting landmark was surpassed when he then announced that at 34 years old, he had only held his driver’s license for a year….but not to worry, he’s been driving his whole life! With the radio blaring and his fascination with changing the radio channels while he struggled with following his Uber map app (cursing the “voice” for not giving him enough notice before turns were required”) we had an exciting and a tad harrowing adventure taking the 7.6 mile journey back to the office as I stepped in to guide him after a near fatal turn into Potomac Park as well as a few “surprise” road barriers. We made it back in one piece and I had to smile when I looked down at my Uber app and it announced to me that indeed it was Gregory’s first day driving and I should give him some words of encouragement. My legs might have been a tad shaky but I spread as much good cheer and encouragement as I could muster and made my way home to ask Alexa to order more dog food.