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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Just over Two Months

Despite all my careful planning in the end T-Mobile/Orange/EE let me down with their Travel Boosters in France. No problems at all for the first day.  I suspect the cell phone companies are really pissed off  at the EU ruling that roaming charges in the member countries must be reduced and then end next year. Which is why my cell phone provider drastically changed its costs this year -- last year I was able to buy data for up to a month -- this year all the charges were on a daily basis. But having no choice but to rely on their travel boosters if I was to have any Internet access at our little house in rural France, I was willing  to pay the fees.

However, on day two of my sojourn, when I attempted to buy my daily 'hit' I received a text back saying: "We are sorry, but there's been a technical error and we couldn't add the Internet Trave Booster to your account. You haven't been charged. Please try again later."

I continued to get this message several times over the next 3 or 4 days before I succumbed to calling the 'Help line'. Absolutely no 'help', but assurances that the problem was being looked into and would be fixed as soon as possible. Despite three more calls to the 'Help line' the problem was never solved over the 6 weeks I was in France! I was able to connect to the Internet periodically, when visiting friends with an Internet connection and on days when we passed through the local towns and were able to connect to the free service provided by local tourist offices -- fortunately as my online mailbox was bulging and needed to be cleared.

Needless to say, blogging was off the agenda. Just before I left for France, I received word from my sisters that my mother was very seriously ill and in the hospital. She was not expected to make it. After much consideration, we decided that I would still go to France, as people would be able to contact me on the Internet! The best laid plans, as they say...

I won't even mention the cell phone bill for 112 pounds which included 8 international phone calls that I never made! That is now being investigated with said provider!!!

18 comments:

  1. ok it was a bit of a rant... but its lovely to see you back

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    1. Nothing like a rant when you need one! Thanks for the warm greeting! XO

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  2. Sometimes you need a good rant to keep your blood pressure in check. Sorry to hear about your mom.

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    1. Of course, sometimes the rant can put it up again! Amazingly Mom has recovered from her illness, but is now in a nursing home.

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  3. I'm not surprised you are hopping ... I would be as well. So sorry to hear that your mum is so poorly.

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    1. I do feel better now that I've had a good moan though!

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  4. Arrgghh! I feel for you, Broad. Lovely to see you back, but I'm so sorry to hear your mother is so ill.

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    1. Thanks for your understanding, Perpetua! Mom has recovered from her illness, but is now in a nursing home and more confused than ever. However, she is happy and not distressed at having to go into more intensive care.

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  5. Well, I for one am glad you are back safe and sound. How is your mother?

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    1. Thanks so much DJan for your welcoming words. See above comment for more news about my mother...

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  6. Dear Broad, like DJan, I'm glad that you are home safe and sound, but I wonder about your mom. How is she? And will you be coming here in the States to check on her??? Peace.

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    1. At the moment I have not made any plans to visit the States -- Very soon I will be taking Sam back to Korea -- for my first visit to Asia and also to see my son for the first time in 5 and a half years! Now that my mother no longer has her own apartment, visiting her is more problematic.

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  7. When I went to Paris to visit my mother during 5 decades I never had a cell phone as there were phone booths everywhere. Last May I could not find one at the little station near my cousins to call them to pick us up and had to ask a teenager nearby to call for us. So next time I’ll have to get a cell phone with me but after reading your story I wonder what the cost will be. On our last trip to Estonia and Russia I took my iPad and was able to read emails but I did not make any calls. I am pleased to hear that your mother is better and that you will see you son, 5 ½ years is a very long time.

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    1. If you have an address in Paris, you may be able to buy a pay as you go sim card -- otherwise, if you are using an American cell, it could be quite costly...

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  8. Try changing to 3. With this company your allowance in the UK for calls, texts and data is valid in some other countries, France being one. My husband is on this and I'll be changing when my contract with EE is up.

    Good to hear from you again.

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    1. I have been considering 3 -- however, two people very close to me had great difficulty with them. My friend is very kind, sweet and gentle and I've never heard her raise her voice in anger -- but apparently, she blew her stack in public at the attitude of the company. But, on the other hand they give a very good deal for 4 g and no extra charges in EU countries -- so if you have unlimited data in the UK, you continue to have unlimited data when in France.

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  9. Well, I guess there's no point in repeating what's been said already.
    I do hope you get some kind of satisfaction, though.

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Receiving comments is a joy and I thank you all for taking the trouble and showing your interest. Makes me feel all gooey and stuff!