If I think it might rain, I take an umbrella – just in case.
If I go to a restaurant, I hope they will have at least one thing on the menu that is gluten free.
If I go to the doctor, I let him tell me what’s wrong and what I should do about it.
I think about the time to drive down the coast and cross my fingers that there isn’t too much traffic.
I am okay with uncertainty. I am okay with a dark cloud threatening what could have been a sunny afternoon.
I think that part of the restaurant experience is collectively looking at the menu, asking the person next to you what they are having, figuring out what the menu options actually mean and even feeling a bit of menu envy when someone picks something that looks better than yours.
I am okay being the recipient of bad news delivered skilfully by a doctor. I am especially okay with receiving good news, even delivered in a not-good-news kind of way.
I am always delighted when you have the Gold Coast highway to yourself and arrive up to half an hour earlier than expected.
But apparently this level of doubt, surprise, contemplation is no longer necessary.
There are apps for this.
You can check the BOM for the weather. You can see what the sky will look like at a particular time and you can plan accordingly. If the BOM says to bring an umbrella, then bring one. Otherwise leave it at home.
You can check traffic and know in advance best routes to take to any destination. Your GPS will eliminate any need to get your bearings, taking into account shortest, cheapest and other random considerations.
Doctors no longer need to make diagnoses. Not when you go to them with yours, having fed everything you know into Doctor Google. Those innocuous minor symptoms suddenly take on graphic proportion, pictures included. And we won’t even talk about the really scary stuff.
Similarly, why spend pointless time at a restaurant when you could Google the menu at home, figure out what you will feel like tomorrow night and even order in advance? You can check out the reviews if you like, just to make sure food poisoning won’t be a part of the same experience.
Then you can get there, get that food on the table and go home to watch telly.
I mean why look at each other when you could be watching Vera wandering the countryside on the ABC?
I meanwhile wander about in my own uncertain, just-in-case countryside, umbrella at the ready, trying to figure out what au gratin means.