Less than a minute before I started writing this, my phone crashed.
As did my world.
I had planned to sit down and write about something completely different, about goodbyes, but the crashing of my phone has literally brought my whole life to a standstill.
The first thing that came to mind is the fact that I have work I would really like to wake up real early the next day and complete. Work that requires me to be on the Internet doing some research. Internet that I normally get via creating a hot-spot on my phone. This no longer being an option, I sulk.
Another thing on my to-do list is emailing one of my lecturers the names and registration numbers of all my classmates in the groups we have formed to do a class assignment. A little over an hour before the crash, we shall simply refer to it as ‘the crash’ now, I posted on my class group asking everyone to, on separate Whatsapp threads, send me their official names and registration numbers. Thus far, only two had replied. How am I supposed to access the rest? Even when I do, I’d have to make the long trek all the way into school to send that email. I sulk a little more.
There’s the cover letter for a certain job I intended to send early the next morning as well, even that I cannot do.
The notes I am trying to catch up on, from the few days that I missed school to attend a writing workshop, I had taken pictures of a classmate’s notes and was slowly working through them, writing them in my own notebook, not anymore. Sulk getting deeper.
The call I am scheduled to make tomorrow morning, to my uncle’s website hosting provider with regards to the fact that his site has been down for a little over a week now, also off the table. Sulk now permanently etched onto my face.
Look at how dependent I am on my phone!
I read books, on my phone.
My daily to-do lists, on my phone.
My communication with the outside world, yeah, I have my laptop, but my phone is my gateway to the Internet which is really my gateway to the rest of the world.
I’m still in shock. I do not even know what my next move will be! I do not want to imagine what the next few days will be like for me.
I got this phone in January. I haven’t had a memory card so every so often, more often than is comfortable, I have had to keep on deleting…pictures, applications, music, documents, messages, basically everything…to make room for others. This is a covert means of torture I tell you, having to pick and choose what stays and what goes. Give me needles in the eyes any day…no, not really. I will stick with the suffering of having to watch what I put in my phone memory, as though my phone is on a diet.
I bought a memory card, finally, and then after my first attempt at moving my applications to the memory card, realised that they all kept crashing and giving errors. A little trouble-shooting led me to the discovery that android no longer supports installation of applications on to the memory card out of the box. Curse you Android Lollipop! Curse you! And all those that come after you…Marshmallow, I’m talking to you now! (Unless Android came to their senses and made things right in Marshmallow, in which case, I’m sorry for the misunderstanding Marshmallow. Forgive me.)
So, of course I was going to look for a way to work around that. Surely, how can I have bought a memory card and still be living with the sufferings of one who does not have one? My online search led me to downloading an application which was supposed to ‘root’ my phone and allow me to do this.
Rooting means you have root access to your device which just includes enhanced privileges that a typical mobile phone user should not have.
This application was not available on the Google Play Store so I had to get it from a third party site. My phone warned me that installing an application not approved by android might be dangerous. I ignored this, my first mistake. (Not that there were any others, I realise that writing ‘my first mistake’ makes the reader anticipate another, but there was none. I just kept the ‘first’, because the sentence would have a completely different feel without it. ‘My mistake’…vs…’My first mistake’. Call it unjustified suspense if you must.)
This ‘rooting’ process, when complete, left me with a second random application that just popped onto my phone out of nowhere. It was telling me all sorts of things about optimizing my phone and viruses being detected. At this point, of course red flags were raised in my head, but, I had to stop my search and head out of the house for a certain engagement, so that was left unresolved. A day later, my phone gets completely drained of battery, no big deal, right? This happens all the time!
I naturally reach for my charger and plug it in…but…alas…this is not like every other time. This time…a yellow triangular sign with an exclamation mark at its centre has taken over my screen. The phone won’t even charge. This cannot be good!
‘Custom Binary Blocked by FRP,’ says the message at the top.
Below that, in blood red, danger red, my favourite colour red, “SECURE FAIL : KERNEL”
I shall get into my bed and just cry for a bit now.
I did not get into my bed and cry.
My friend told me that a neighbour of ours is really good with phones. I took it to her.
My phone guy is a girl!!
Less than 24hours later, I had my baby back.