Saturday, May 21, 2016

Connecting to Florida

     When we arrived here in this new territory, connecting to the internet and acquiring TV were top of the list.
While we are big readers, and do actually emerge into the outside world from time to time, we can also happily sit in front of the boob tube for three hours at a clip. I’m not sure what my husband’s excuse is, but my justification is all those years of school and teaching. An English degree can often mean reading a novel in two days and then churning out a brilliant analysis of it on the third. And the pay-off for all that hard work is that you then get to spend your evenings reading other people’s analyses – usually in batches of 30 or so.

          So yes, television for me still feels downright hedonistic.

          As for connecting to the internet, this was also important since our new place is more fortified than the Fuhrerbunker of 1945. We’re all concrete and steel here, so a phone call or a check with Google Maps requires a trip to the lanai (new word for my vocabulary, translated as porch) where at this time of year the temperature averages a moist 87. We don’t have a land line, so when my cell phone rings it means I have to gallop across the living room and get the sliding door open before accepting the call. If I hit the green ‘accept’ even one inch from the doorway, the call burps into oblivion. Once on the lanai, I’m torn between conversation and liquefaction. 

          The cable guy was due on Monday. I had already heard horror stories from other residents about a surly tech who arrived late or not at all, and who was so unpleasant they couldn’t wait for him to leave. But in the lottery of installers, I got Manny, wonderful Manny. He was polite and tidy and efficient, all the while training a sidekick he’d brought along. When he finished it was all I could do to avoid embracing him. 

          Except 30 seconds after he left, I realized he’d hooked us up to Comcast’s modem, not the one we’d bought ourselves. I ran outside, but Manny had disappeared as thoroughly as the Lone Ranger. 

          I called Comcast and went through the hell of automated responses, none of which had anything to do with my need, which was to get in touch with Manny, since he was very likely still within spitting distance. After three calls, one where I was inadvertently transferred to the wrong department, and another that evaporated since I had unthinkingly traveled to the room with the modem, I was given a date for another tech visit. Six days away. 

          No problem, except in a fit of personal initiative, I had tried hooking up our modem myself, thereby breaking the link with Mother Comcast. So no internet. 

          Two hours after that, our cell phone people sent a warning that we had already used 75% of our data plan.

          However, the gods must have finally tired of all this entertainment, because on Tuesday they sent me a rep from Comcast’s quality control department who called to say he was in the area and would be happy to correct the error. Again, another polite and skilled Comcast person, and we’re now all set. 

          But I have to admit to feeling a bit of satisfaction when after he connected to headquarters, and was at the laaast step to completion, he shifted position, lost the call and had to go outside and start all over, cycling through the entire “Welcome to Comcast!” litany before he could get back to a human.


  1. We have a landline because we live in an area where cell phones only work outside and like you it's too hot to stay out there long.

  2. You really have picked up sticks and dug them in elsewhere. Settling in will be interesting.

    1. This is a temporary move. We'll be heading back just in time for the humid Massachusetts summer - should it ever decide to arrive.

  3. How nice to find not one, but two efficient and helpful technicians. Almost a miracle.
    Bleah on the humidity front though.

  4. Isn't that the sweetest satisfaction when an employee of a company gets the same phone runaround as the rest of us?
    I'm so glad you got two wonderfully helpful and polite techs.

  5. I am again grateful for my Pacific Northwest rain and coolness with humidity usually high but tolerable because it's not hot. I couldn't get comfy in that heat and humidity! Glad to hear you've got something working, at least on your lanai. Love that word. :-)

  6. Argh! Technology and "customer service" -- always a terrible combination!

    Well, in the end, it's a good thing to have a fortified residence in Florida for when those big swirly storms come calling.

    1. Never mind the hurricanes. We're apparently built to withstand the next nuclear event.

  7. That was poetic justice at the end. You may have a point. If the calls can't get through the fortifications, the hurricanes will probably be ineffective also. Enjoy the humidity.


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