Saturday, July 23, 2011
Finally my internet connection is back!
It died sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning. On Tuesday morning I couldn't get online but as this occasionally happens for “normal” outages, I just got on with my day, thinking it'd be ok when I got back home in the evening. It wasn't, so I called my ISP. As it was late and nobody was around to do much, they got me to try fiddling with router and sockets and told me they'd call me in the morning to find if it was fixed. It wasn't, so they said they'd call me back by the following day with an appointment for an engineer to visit. A few hours later they rang back with an appointment for the following day, between 12 noon and 3 pm. So far so good.
At 2.30 pm the following day, I rang them to make sure someone would be coming. They had no record of the appointment. I went apesh*t! Another appointment was made for Saturday between 7 and 9 am. At 8.30 am my mobile rang but I couldn't get to it in time. The number had been withheld and I couldn't even rang back, but I called the main number to ask them to please give me the engineer's number or contact him themselves asking him to ring me back. The lady said that he was probably just ringing to say he was on his way and he'd be there soon. He rang again at 10.15 to say he was running late and he'd be there soon. Eventually he arrived just before 11 (2 hours late). He needed me to sign an agreement before he could do any work. When I went to read it I saw it was an incorrect agreement so I refused to sign it. It took almost an hour before his boss uploaded the right one to his Blackberry so I could sign it and he get on with his work.
Not long before noon my internet was ok, I had a new router and he'd gone. This is a very summarised and sanitised version. The full version (that includes several phone calls that, some time down the line when I'm not so angry, I'll probably find funny as they're so surreal) is currently winding its way through the ISP's corridors with a request for compensation.
In the middle of that I had a job application to send in by Friday afternoon, which was a bit tricky without an internet connection. Thankfully my trusty phone came to the rescue, as I could work on stuff off line on my computer, then load it on the mobile and adjourn to a local cafe' where the owners let me use their laptop and wireless connection to do what needed doing on line. In other words, I spent the last three days or so sipping cappuccinos and munching croissants, watching the world go by :D
I'm glad all's back to normal as I have more applications to fill in by the end of next week.
I was a bit shocked to realise how reliant on the 'net my life is. I'd never really thought about it until I found myself without it, but I use it all through the day for every aspect of my life.
Spark is a big part of it, of course, as I'm always logging food and stuff, checking totals to see where I'm at throughout the day. Then, if I'm going out, I check directions and timetables if I'm using public transport. If I need a 'phone number, I look it up on the net. I read the news on the net, I don't know the last time I bought a paper. I do get the Standard most days but I always have the BBC news open on my computer. I do my shopping on the net (although that has not been a problem during the past few days as I had no big shops planned). I look and apply for work on the net, do actual work on the net (this week I missed out on several jobs because I had no connection). I do my banking, pay bills, look up info, watch films, talk to friends and just about everything else on the net.
This week I was really panicking. Some things I just couldn't do without a connection (like the jobs mentioned above). Most things I could have done, and some things I managed to do (like the job application, thanks to the cafe' staff), but they would have taken and took about 5 times as long to do without the 'net.
Until just over 10 years ago I had never been online.
Isn't that scary!