What it’s like to be Phoneless in New York: How to get around, keep in contact, and what you might learn along the way. 

Also known as a vicious cycle – two or more conditions require the other conditions to be fulfilled, but these other conditions also require the original condition to be fulfilled. In simple terms, this means neither can get fulfilled without the other. A needs B needs A. -UrbanDictionary

How to “Lose” a Phone in New York

April 1st, popularly known as April Fools Day, this New New Yorker steps on the B26 bus with her overly cool struggling artist friend, Ray. Earlier Ray asked if I want to go to an album release concert accompanied by a light show. With an explanation like that, you bet I am in. We decide to take the bus to our anticipated destination since I was a virgin to riding the MTA Bus line.

It took about 3 minutes walking off that B26 to discover my phone missing. My pockets, hands, purse. Earth to Mandy this is not a joke.  You have lost your phone.

Several failed attempts to access a human on the 511 MTA phone line, Ray suggested we try to salvage the night. We proceed forward with the promise of her buying me a drink upon arrival to the concert (let’s just hope they make them strong). Breath Mandy. What happened happened. Breathe-Smile-Move on.

The next day

The following day I dust off my iPad mini, connect it to wifi and break the news to my Apple friends only. I do my best to be positive about the situation being new to New York, living in an unfamiliar area in a not so best part of Brooklyn, broke again, no joke, try to find a job with no phone (good luck), and only able to text/Facetime/connect to the internet/track myself on maps when connected to wifi.

This is going to be an experience.

DSC_0969.jpgI meet up with friends to party hop, sharing my story about the misfortune of my phone and terrible experience with the MTA system, helping to cope with my loss and receive listener feedback.

“When are you getting a new phone?”

“Have you tried Find my Phone?”

“Are you really going to carry around that IPad?”

At the end of the night I decided I would make it work, why not? The Universe is obviously challenging me. I have an IPad, laptop, and Nikon how hard can it be?!



The magic number. Three weeks and one day I lived through the New York jungle and did not die without a phone.

_DSC0339.JPG10 takeaways from being without a phone:

  1. The hustle for finding Wifi spots is more real than ever. You can find them at bars, coffee shops (see #4), and restaurants
  2. Either read books or chat with people on the subway due to aimlessly looking around, which to  most is an open invitation to spark conversation
  3. Met awesome and humbling people asking for directions since I had no tracking on my maps – Call out to Sandy ❤
  4. Most Manhattan coffee shops do not offer wifi (they try limiting people from sticking around. Guilty)
  5. GREAT excuse to not give guys my number, since technically did not have one
  6. I was known as BRAVE and a HUSTLER (becoming my middle name) for just arriving and attempting to survive under these circumstances
  7. Lost connection with Social Media. It was a good thing, but also presented a challenge to get back in
  8. Gained more IRL (In Real Life) friends than FB, Insta, Blog, Snapchat can ever provide me
  9. Had to get over my MTA Bus fear to get the NEW phone since FedEx was located in a far away land with no subway lines (thank you Texas friend for sending me your spare)
  10. Real and virtual appreciation for being disconnected and reconnected to the world we live in

Side note: Light installation/Album release concert was Aw-some! Check out the band Alpenglow for some chill-unwinding music.



3 thoughts on “What it’s like to be Phoneless in New York: How to get around, keep in contact, and what you might learn along the way. ”


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.