The Hundred Year Fiasco

It was July 5th. The morning sun had not yet broken through the clouds as I groggily fired up the PC.

The tower hummed to life as all of the familiar lights flickered. I let the computer wake up while I brewed up some coffee and toasted my english muffins. The air was full of buttered bread, coffee, and small shadows that began to creep across the floor as the sun poked out between the clouds.

I sat down at my computer chair, munching on my muffin and sipping my cuppa. I typed in the password and waited impatiently as I fingered crumbs off my plate. A finger was still in my mouth when I looked up at the screen and saw it..

No. Internet. Connection.

My mouth dropped open and my finger fell to the desk. My eyes grew wide and my heart began beating a little faster. All of the usual withdrawal symptoms.

Wait… this can’t be right. I climbed under the computer desk, A.K.A. dust-bunny land. Down on all fours in my pajamas, I began a frantic check of the wires going to the modem and computer. Was it plugged into the jack?

I sat up and sighed heavily. I’d have to recycle the power to the modem. For such a small chore, it seemed a huge dread. It only took a few minutes, if even that, but they seemed to drag on.

I followed the age-old procedure of unplugging the power cord, the dsl cord, and then the ethernet cord. I unplugged the jack. I waited the horribly eternal one minute and then plugged everything back in.

Nothing. All of the lights were green except for the important one. The DSL light was totally red.

Shit.

I decided to try restarting the computer, this time sighing and tapping fingers while it rebooted. Acid kicked up in my mouth. This shouldn’t have any impact on whether the modem is working, but it was a last ditch effort.

No.Internet.Connection.

“What the fuck?!” I’m sure I had woken half of my neighbors, but I didn’t care as much as I should. I had no internet! They’d understand.

 


 

This is how my day started. Well, maybe not *exactly* how.. but it gets the point across. I didn’t have a lot of time to mess around any further with the blasted thing since Hubby and I had to get to work. I figured it was just another “outage”.

Oh how wrong I was.

I contacted my internet provider once I got home. I spoke with a lovely woman who said that a technician had been out in the area recently and had “accidentally” turned off the internet for our entire area.

Fucking Christ.

She assured me that our area was being rerouted to another server, but if the problem continued, I should call back after 6pm that night.

It continued. I called back. And then I realized that everything I had been told was probably a lie.

At 6pm, the alternate customer service reps take over. I actually got the same customer service rep that I talked to with the last outage. She was very helpful the last time.. not so much this time. Everything I said was met with heavy sighs and a strained voice that said every word as if she were speaking to a toddler.

She had a very thick accent and I couldn’t understand her very well. I’m sure this is what was causing her distress. It took about five repeats from her end before I realized she wasn’t asking for my company address, but my complete address. I felt like an ass for repeating that I was not a business. Ugh.

The longer we spoke, the more furiously I paced. Hubby started following me around asking if I was okay and rubbing my shoulders as I made fists in the air.

“No, the only red light is the DSL light!” I roared into the phone. I had answered the question a million times. She would click off to put me on hold and then click back on, probably with a question she had already asked me. I knew that she knew what she was doing. At least, she did last time. Why was she doing such a horrible job this time?

Despite the problems, I finally got an appointment set up for a technician to come out.. in a week. I hung up the phone, infuriated. Not just at the long wait, but also at the obvious miscommunications taking place. Hubby calmed the situation with the notion that in a week, it would all be over and we would have the internet back.

Again, we were very wrong.

The week came and went. No technician showed up.

I called back on my lunch break to make sure I would get ahold of a primary CSP (customer service representative) . I got a CSP that seemed honest and that I could understand. He apologized for the obvious inconvenience. (Was that all it was? It felt like I had lost a limb.. maybe I was being dramatic..)

Apparently, my inside wire insurance had been removed and then re-added to my account.
Gee, I wonder who could have done that.
For some reason, the system thought that meant the tech appointment had been cancelled. He put me on hold and contacted the technician supervisor to get it straightened out. I got another tech appointment. Another week’s wait. I was just happy to have an end to this nightmare.

He assured me the technician would be there on Thursday the 21st, and only after I was off work. I breathed a sigh of relief.

To calm the wait and our fraying nerves, we spent the hours after work for the week playing Solitaire and watching YouTube videos on our phones. What was the point of having a computer if there wasn’t any internet? Oy.
I was getting increasingly good at Minesweeper and Hubby had found some Pen and Teller magic show.

That Tuesday, I went to pick up my husband from work, just like every other day.. but I found out some grim news. Our landlord had gotten ahold of my husband while he was at work. He asked about an internet technician. It was Noon when he texted. It was Tuesday the 19th.. not Thursday the 21st.

While I drove home, Hubby called the internet company back, again, and explained the situation. The CSP assured him that the appointment was still set. Apparently, if a tech is in the area for a call, they will swing by and see if they can knock it out instead of having to make the drive later on. It seemed feasible.

I didn’t hold my breath, but I hoped the tech would show up on Thursday.

On the 21st, I sped home so I could do a quick clean of the place before having to speed back into town to get hubby, and then speed home again to get there before the tech (hopefully) showed up.
I sucked up dust-bunny-ville with a powerful cyclone (A.K.A. Hoover) and pulled everything away from the modem and wall jack. I picked up Hubby and we both waited, with half-baited breath.

At 8pm (an hour after the cutoff point), we admitted defeat and went to bed.

The following day after work.. well, you know the drill by now.

The CSP I spoke to, still a different one than all the others, apologized profusely. She said that the only thing she could do was to set up another .. yeah, you know.

This time, however, we set it up for early morning on Saturday. The CSP put in the notes that we would absolutely not be home until then. I wasn’t sure if it would make a difference, but I was grasping at straws here.

I explained this to Hubby as we drove home. We both agreed it was a good idea. He had to work all day Saturday, but I would be at home. Neither of us dared to ask if the notes in the computer would actually keep a tech from stopping by at a more convenient time .. well, convenient for them, anyways. We were too superstitious by this point. We had become internet jaded.

Once home, Hubby and I sat around in the living room, soaking up the air conditioning. I sat in the rocking chair, petting the cats. Hubby was eating and watching Pen and Teller on his phone. I hate Pen and Teller.

Suddenly, he popped his head up.

“Uh, we have internet.”

I jumped out of the chair, cats racing to all corners of the room as if a tornado was going by.

“WHAT?!”

We both looked at the modem. All of the little lights were on and were green. Even the DSL light.

“How did that happen? Did a tech come out and not tell us?” I checked the windows. No tech vans.

Hubby shrugged. “We should keep the appointment in case it goes out, again.” I nodded and rubbed my greedy little hands together. “Mmmm, sweet internet,” I whispered. Hubby slowly backed away and retreated to the bedroom to watch more Pen and Teller.

Ah, two problems solved. Life was good.

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