This is really interesting to me. Nearly two years ago, I went out and bought a portable phone base and three handsets for our home.
One day last year, out of the blue, we noticed that one of our handsets was missing. After weeks of searching and countless fruitless "paging" efforts (the phone eventually died in the crevasse that it fell into, I guess, rendering the page function useless), we gave up on it. We were down to two handsets. It was a bit of an adjustment for a while, but we got used to the idea of it and made do. Frustrating, but not the biggest deal. Our house isn't that big.
About 6 months ago, I noticed that finding one of the two phones when they were ringing was mysteriously more challenging. Somehow, they were "both" always upstairs when I was in the kitchen, or they were "both" in the bedroom when I was doing the dishes. Eventually, I put two and two together (or not, as this case implies), and discovered that the reason it was so hard to find a ringing phone in the house was because there were no longer two handsets to choose from. We were somehow down to one. Again, paging was of no use this time, because evidently the phone was already dead when it disappeared. All signs point to phone suicide. Very strange.
Living with one phone in the house was an adjustment to say the least. So much so that Dave brought home a phone with a cord that would sit in the kitchen until our lost phones decided to come home. This worked reasonably well for us for a while.
Yesterday evening the phone rang. For once, Dave and I were sitting down together, taking it easy. Would've been nice to be able to chat with whoever was calling on one of our portable phones. We scoured the environs to no avail. We both quietly realized that the phone-with-the-cord was the only ringing phone we could hear. We looked at each other and knew. They were all gone.
Now we are getting used to the realities of single phone-with-a-cord living. I can't say that it's easy, but it puts things in perspective. I can see what's important now and what isn't. I do want you to know, though, that all those times that you call and it rings 5 times only to be followed by our voicemail, I'm actually home, running frantically to reach the one phone left in my house.
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