Making a break for it

So, that was weird.

I registered my first domain name, wildhavencreative.com, about 10 years ago with a discount registrar that you’ve heard of but whom I won’t identify here. At the same time, I also bought my first hosting package. Until then, I’d been dependent, almost literally, on the kindness of strangers in order to host anything personal on the Web. It was past time for me to make the leap, and I did.

I’ve done a variety of things at wildhavencreative.com over the years. Most recently, it hosted my portfolio site, important for attracting clients and courting potential employers. What I’ve done mostly with the domain, though, didn’t have anything to do with the website. It had to do with the email address.

For the past 10 years, my primary email address has been lamar [at] wildhavencreative [dot] com. I use it everywhere, on every service that requires an email address when you register for it. Although its popularity has waned a bit in the era of social media, email is still my primary mode of communication, perhaps even exceeding face-to-face contact.

I hadn’t really considered how personally invested in that particular email address, though, until I did all the stuff needed to transfer the domain name — and the address stopped working. I mean, I knew it would stop working for the period it took for the domain to transfer registrars and for me to get it set up in its new hosting environment. That was completely expected.

What I didn’t expect was the sense of disconnect, even isolation, that came when I realized that lamar [at] wildhavencreative [dot] com was not, at that moment, functional. I couldn’t pop into my iPhone and check my mail. Or my iPad. Or my computer. Anything anyone sent to me for that period was just gone, just lost in a black hole.

It wasn’t even as if I didn’t have email at all. I have other email addresses. It’s even possible for people to, you know, call me on the phone if they really, really need to get in touch with me. They could even contact me on the Twitters and the Facebooks.

I was really unprepared for how disorienting it was to lose that address, even for a short time.

So, yeah. It was weird.

Don’t get me started on what happened when I deleted the account settings from my email client and all my saved emails disappeared. Just don’t.

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