And it would have been here now had I not fallen off my dial up internet connection and lost it.
And things have moved along - today I feel far more charitable about them.
Yesterday I rang the "Xtra get broadband" phone number. I was put through to Brian. Now I can only advise that if you ring Xtra and get Brian that you hang up and call back later. If you are inclined to high blood pressure, heart problems, hyperventilating or similar I suggest you have your medication on hand before you attempt any conversation with Brian. In short Brian is a bumped up little smartarse.
Anyway I got Brian. I explained with reasonable civility that whenever Xtra ran a line check on my phone line they found I could not have Broadband because I was too far from the exchange, but my neighbour had it so obviously I wasn't too far from the exchange.
"Is this a near neighbour or are you talking about someone a couple of kilometres down the road?" asks Brian with just a hint of sarcasm.
"I am talking about 5o metres away, close enough to use our cordless phone at their place."
"Well you must have a good cordless phone!"
Still feeling reasonably civil I tell him that since it cost $99 three years ago and is still working fine I do consider our cordless phone a good one, but I wouldn't call it a state of the art appliance.
"hmm" says Brian. "They probably have satelitte, what's their phone number?"
I tell him their phone number.. I wait while he looks it up. "Yes they MIGHT have Jetstream" he says in due course. "But that doesn't mean you can have it as the tests say it won't work on your phone line, so you can't"
"Well could you explain to me what the difference is, between them and me, because I cannot see why it should work at their place and not ours, if there is a fault in our line perhaps someone would be good enough to fix it for me. I don't understand this. "
"No, it's just the way it is, you can't have it, we aren't obliged to supply you with anything, or fix anything. This happens all the time next door neighbours often can't get what their neighbours get. You should go and live in town then you can have Jetstream. Otherwise you can have satellite, every single person in the whole country can have that. I spend all day talking to people like you."
Something snaps at about this point. "Do not tell me where I should and shouldn't live thank you, I am not prepared to pay for satellite installation, and I want to talk to your supervisor."
"Why? She'll tell you exactly the same thing. We don't have to provide you with anything, I don't even have to keep talking to you. Anyway you can't talk to her she's not available"
"Right well give me her name and email address. And your name"
"Why? It won't do you any good, you won't get broadband."
"At this point I don't care, I am going to complain to someone."
"Well it is a waste of time."
"As I said I don't care, I am going to complain. Can I have her name and e-mail address and your name?"
So he gives me his supervisors name and e-mail, but won't give me his surname. In the end he gives me his employee number. In between every detail he tells me that I am wasting my time, I will not achieve anything, and I am not entitled to anything anyway so I have no right to suggest that they should be providing me with anything. I thank him somewhat abruptly and hang up.
I e-mail his supervisor. This is made a little difficult by the fact that he appears to have given me an e-mail address that doesn't work. Mind you I could have written it down incorrectly between being told I am wasting my time and everyone else will tell me exactly the same thing. I play with the spelling a little and get the right e-mail the third time. Supervisor must have only been out for a short time because she replies immediately advising she will refer my case to the technicians to see if anything can be done, and she just so happened to have my conversation with Brian recorded as part of the random recording for training they do, so she would listen to it later and look into my complaint that he was rude and unhelpful. There is some small satisfaction in just complaining about Brian, even if I never get broadband.
Get home this evening and there is a phone call from the supervisor asking me to ring her so they can organise a installation of Jetstream to see if it will work at my place. I'm still taking this in when the phone rings and it is the evening shift supervisor who had inherited the problem when the morning supervisor went home and thought she would just ring me on the off chance she could catch me. She is very very sorry about Brian. Lots of people with more authority than Brian have now listened to the tape of our conversation and they are all somewhat amazed and quite appalled that he spoke to me like that. Further training will be applied to Brian immediately as he cannot treat people like this. I smirk but am extremely gracious in accepting the apology.
Now lets sort my broadband installation out.
They are coming next week to install Jetstream to see if it will work. The line is marginal but it could well work fine. We may need a special modem, but will try the standard one first.
(And Brian..... up yours)