So I finally have a Belize phone number. I feel all kinds of ways about this. I’ve been enjoying using text and email as my primary source of communication, as I’m not a phone person and don’t really like talking on one. This has been working for staying in touch with my folks abroad, but here in Belize where there isn’t wifi everywhere, it just isn’t practical for connecting with people locally. Don’t get me wrong – I love being able to walk around and not be tethered to my device and reachable at every damn moment. At the same time, being that I’m trying to get my professional life, it’s been increasingly embarrassing to be saying “No, I still don’t have a phone…” Yeah, not a good look.

After a whole bunch of drama trying to get my iPhone unlocked and set up here, and finding out how much it will cost, I decided to just get a cheap temporary phone to use for calls and local texting (like, I literally walked into a store and said “What’s the cheapest phone you have? Gimme that one.”)

This is what I’m workin’ with:

Fierce, I know. I haven’t had a phone this bootleg basic since 2004, and it wasn’t cute then. The thing is, nobody cares. A lot of folks here have smartphones, but a lot also have these and no one is shaming me for having a phone like this, or for being cheap and not getting a phone plan and having to buy credit every five minutes. It’s one of the things I love about being in Belize – not feeling the pressure to have the latest, hottest whatever.

Programming it was a whole thing and was way more complicated than it should have been, as I had forgotten how to even operate this kind of phone. And texting is gonna be a bitch. But I hollered when I read the manual and saw the fabulous feature of making “fake calls”. Apparently, I can simulate an incoming call when I want to “get out of meetings or unwanted conversations”. The realest! I wish I’d had that on my phone when I was in New York!

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