It was around 16:10 when I noticed that my phone status was "No Access" rather than its usual "GLOBE" or "For Emergency use Only". I was concerned because Ivan, who was supposed to meet me at 16:00 had yet to arrive. I found it a bit strange since I was in an area where the signal is always pretty good.
I did the first thing I always do when I can't get a signal, I dialed *77#. Nothing. Perhaps a phone glitch like "Insert SIM"? I turned my phone off and turned it on after a minute or so. The "Searching" status was on for about five minutes before reverting to the dreaded "No Access".
I assumed the worst and thought that it was because I had yet to pay my phone bill, so I quickly changed into my TM sim. I went to the 7-11 next door and bought a load card for my TM sim, but when I turned my phone on, the status was still "No Access". I was quick to berate myself for losing my Sun sim.
I decided to go old school and use the phone booth, but when I dialed Ivan's cel number, it was unattended, as well. Frustrated, I called Leonard who told me all Globe subscribers had no signal. My first thought was, "Well, crap." After ending my conversation with Leonard, I decided to wait for Ivan a bit longer. When he didn't show up, I went to the badminton place we were supposed to go to, and found him there.
When I was in elementary, meeting up required that you knew what time you were going to meet and exactly where. With no way to communicate in transit, the need for a definite agreement was great.
In high school, I had a pager. I usually gave the excuse that the messages never got to me, which they oftentimes didn't, so the pager really wasn't much of an improvement. I remember this one time that my high school friends and I were supposed to meet, I waited over an hour for them at National Bookstore only to receive their page long after we'd met up that they would be late.
Near the end of high school, I got my first celphone. I thought it was frivolous and expensive, especially since I already had a pager. Now, it's indispensable. Times like this, I realize how much so.
My, how things change is such a short time...