January 3, 2009

Happy New Year!

The days at the end of 2008 and beginning of 2009 have been some of the most hectic in my nearly 70 years. At least it seems that way! Perhaps there have been others more hectic and confounding, but likely I've forgotten them.

In addition to the move, we took off a few days and traveled to Texas to see our eldest grandson graduate from college. All of our children and grandchildren were there as well; the grandchildren ranging in age from 3 to 22! Between all the "Rock Star" concerts on the Wii and noisy dogs, I think I lost a little more of my hearing.

When we sold the lake house and terminated the DirecTV service, we anticipated switching to Dish Network so we could bundle all of our telecom services under the AT&T banner. We didn't have all of the TVs available when the Dish installer arrived and he declined to complete the installation.

By the time we had all of the TVs ready to be connected, Dish had dropped a couple of our local stations, so I called and cancelled the installation. I contacted DirecTV to reestablish our account with them.

You know that feeling you get when you call some company, go through all their menu options with the hope of finding a live person at the end, but the person you finally reach is in Cattlegap, Egypt, and doesn't speak your brand of English!?

The DirecTV person with whom I spoke set me up for a NEW account. Not only that, she somehow also set it up at our former address. But, how was I to know...the woman didn't speak anything close to what I speak, and spoke faster than I could listen! But, at the end of the conversation I figured I'd have satellite TV in a couple of days.

A couple of days later I received a call from DirecTV telling me that they would not be making the installation. The caller gave me a telephone number to call for a more thorough explaination.

Turns out, the number was to a telephone in their Fraud Protection office! The answering machine of the person I needed to speak to told me that she "was either out of the office or on the other telephone." It told me that for the next several hours and days! Each time, I left a message asking for a return call, only to be away myself when she finally did.

Her call told my answering machine that it was the policy of DirecTV to not create a new account for old customers at the same address until two years after their original account had expired. It finally dawned on me what had occurred during the call to Cattlegap! I've called the fraud person back any number of times but the line has been continiously busy!

In the meantime, I've written a letter to DirecTV's customer service in Colorado, asking them to have someone contact me. We'll see if that person is also from Cattlegap. Perhaps this time I'll get someone in Bin Laden's neighborhood!

Next time I'll tell you about my excellent adventure with AT&T. I can tell you this: They think the internet can't hide!

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