Saturday, 20 July 2013

Dial 999 ....

Is there a problem?
Our power supply is overhead. Along the road and in the fields one can see a number of wooden and concrete poles, holding up the electricity cables leading to our house, the last one in the network. As a little bonus the telephone cable is attached to the same poles. Of course concrete, let alone wooden poles do not have an eternal lifespan, even though our poles looked pretty sturdy and strong. However, the authorities decided we were in for a replacement of our derelict poles. Beginning of the year the new poles were erected and the cables were moved from the old to the new supports. As far as electricity goes, that is. The telephone cable had to be moved by France Telecom, at their own discretion.
One Sunday night we had unplugged our internet box because of a heavy thunderstorm, and when we plugged everything back in at around 23h00 the box seemed as dead as a doornail. Consequence of this is that the phone we use for (free) outgoing calls also had stopped working. Since this not unusual, we waited till the next day, plugged the box a number of times in and out, and finally phoned our internet provider Free. At first they suggested what we had already done a dozen times, and in the end agreed that our problem had to be logged with France Telecom.

Ready to roll!
We would receive an e-mail informing us of the status .... but we could not approach our e-mail. We could check the status on the internet ..... but we could not get onto the internet. Having patience seemed to be the only remedy. On Monday we saw a bunch of workmen fiddling around with the telephone cable. No, they did not come to repair something, that was certainly not on their order form. They came to move the cable. Tuesday we saw different men playing around with the cable. The same question resulted in the same answer. At least towards the evening our France Telecom line worked again, the one we normally only use for incoming calls. At least we could phone out, although not free of charge.

Why not tie them with a knot!
Wednesday we resorted to our portable PC and to Wi-Fi, so at least that way we could check our mail. That day we managed to secure a booking for a gîte, which made us once more aware of the fact that the internet is more or less our business life line. The following day we visited friends with Wi-Fi and drank gallons of coffee in pubs with Wi-Fi.
However, when we came home from a day out the following Sunday night around 23h00, the box had miraculously switched itself on and was working.
Thinking back now we think we know what had happened. France telecom's maintenance programme obviously disconnects users a day before works are taking place, and the program decides that a week is sufficient for the workers to do their job and automatically re-connects after that week.

 photo internet2.gif

It would have been nice however if France telecom would have had the decency to issue a warning beforehand....

For those who still can approach the internet, I can strongly recommend the link to our own website!

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