They didn’t believe me when I told them there was an open wireless network in range, aptly named “Free Wifi.” It was rather slow, but that’s not the problem. You see, we were camping out in the middle of nowhere (Tar Hollow forests, for any fellow Ohioans out there.) We parked the truck about a mile down the trail, and from there it was a fifteen minute drive to the only ramp onto the highway. We were far removed from civilization, to say the least.
After we were all done with checking in on Facebook and replying to snapchats, my friends and I made a game of finding the source of the signal. Marco and Sean went in one direction, Mike and I went the other. Three minutes later, we were all back at the site. The signal dropped off after 185 paces in the direction I went, and roughly 250 in the opposite.
We agreed with Sean’s proposal to go in a third direction, so to approximate by triangulation the whereabouts of the source. Marco counted the steps, Mike kept an eye on the signal indicator, Sean and I looked out for anything that remotely resembled a router.
About a hundred feet in, Mike told Marco to stop counting. The signal was at full strength. I looked around for flashing LEDs or running cables or anything that lit up. Marco suggested it could be a pocket wifi hotspot that another camper had left behind (though that was unlikely, since there was no 3G coverage out there.) But we found nothing.
We gave up the search and made way back towards the campsite. That’s when the wifi signal disappeared.
The sun was setting and it was starting to fog up. A little spooked, we agreed we would pack our stuff and hike back to the truck. When we got back, we realized that we had been robbed. Our bags were torn open, our food supplies were missing, and our tents were toppled.
What immediately seemed odd was to me that the thieves hadn’t taken our laptops or cameras. Upon closer inspection, all they took were the foods and beverages. And in my opinion, that was the scary part. Needless to say, we crammed whatever we could into our torn-up bags and made a dash for the truck. It wasn’t until we got onto the truck that Mike told us to check our phones. The wifi signal was at full strength again. A chill ran down my spine when I saw the name of the connection: RUN, BOYS, RUN