Friday, December 4, 2009

The Phone System

I've never really been much of a talker when it comes to the phone. To illustrate, Oliver and I have one cell phone between us, and it's the pay as you go type. We really only use it for traveling and the rare occasion we think we might need to call home for some reason (like when he would need to be picked up from work when we lived in the States). The rest of the time, it's turned off. Typically, we have minutes that go to waste, but since it only costs us about $20 ever three months, it's no big deal. We did have a home phone, which saw moderate use, but nothing crazy.

Now that we live here, we have little choice when it comes to a phone system. Getting a cell that works here is big bucks, so we aren't even going to think about that. The phone that came with the place operates on a LAN system. The good news is that we have a U.S. phone number, so it doesn't cost extra for people to call us. The bad news is that it can be very difficult to get through. Also, while it doesn't cost us anything to have it hooked up or to call others in the LAN, it does cost about 50 cents a minute to call someone outside the system. That adds up pretty fast. A lot of people here use Skype to cut costs, but so far we have just avoided using the phone unless absolutely necessary. No one in either of our families seems to be much for the phone, either, so this hasn't really been difficult.

This past week, though, I have been quite aggravated with the phone system. I've been trying to work something out back in the States, and the situation requires that someone can actually call me back. A week went by with no word, so I tried to call this company to find out what was going on (we'd been doing it through email). They won't accept my calls because their phone system requires all incoming calls to register on the caller ID. Obviously, mine will not do this. They finally emailed me back and said they'd been trying to call, but it's always busy.

So, now I have to put this on the back burner for the next couple of weeks. Wyatt and I have eye appointments in a couple weeks, so I'm going to take care of it when I fly to WPB with him. I really do miss the ability to just handle stuff when it comes up.

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