Celebrating the Estancia phone working - yeeeeeeeeees
I remember my odd moan at BT (British Telecom) when I ran a business in the UK when the phone didn’t work for a few days. It was the usual rant like look I am running a business here and you aren’t helping me, get it fixed or I will use another service. Nearly always it worked and the line was up and running in a few days. Switch to Argentina a few years later and you find me running a business i.e. La Margarita. When I purchased the Estancia the phone worked – not great since it often cut off but I could communicate reasonable well with La Margarita when I needed to when I was away from it . After about two years of owning the Estancia the phone every now and again started to play up – it would cut off for no reason in mid conversation.
It was the sign of things to come because one day about two and a half years ago the phone decided that it had done enough work and refused to function any more – there was a loud hissing noise for a few days and then that was it – the line went dead . Now I tried my BT tactic here. Hey get the phone fixed I am trying to run a business here or we will use someone else – oh yea who is that then, came the reply, since we have a monopoly in these parts. We had the same conversation and we had the same response for well over two years - yea ok we will fix your phone but we are waiting for some spare parts and they are on their way - honest! Now the expression manana manana came to mind many a time over this period. I would have my little rant and then forget about it - send messages by pigeon post and life would move on – Winter would come then Spring then Summer still no phone………………………………..
When I first arrived in Argentina my patience levels were low I admit. I was used to things not working but also used to then being fixed pretty rapidly. The more I Iived here the more I had to learn to be patient. It was tough at times but over the years I leant it well. So when the phone broke I had already learnt somewhat to be more patient. However, it not working for well over two years sorely tested my patience as you can imagine. To make matters worse we were paying for the line each month – a line that didn’t work I mean ask you. No matter how many times myself or my office rang Telefonica about us paying the bill for a phone that didn't work we got the same answer “if you cut the line of we can’t fix it “ “err yea that’s logical but when will you be fixing it “well we are waiting for some spare parts blah blah blah” - heeeeeeeeeelp.
This ritual was played out and the months and years came and went with the same complaint from us and the same answer from them. With despair setting in we, about two months ago decided to do something about it. We assumed it was the trees in our woods that were blocking the signal so we purchased an antenna to move the ariel up higher so that we would get a better signal. As always happens when you decide to head something of at the ridge Murphy’s Law cuts in i.e. because you have decided to take action in a different direction the original problem gets fixed. One day last week Claudio, who we had been dealing at in Telfonica turned up unannounced at La Margarita and said the spare parts have arrived – whaaaaaat- and that in a few minutes we would have a phone – well of course we all ready had a phone but it didn’t bloody work . He said well this one will yea yea yea . Full of pessimism we waited a few minutes while he hooked a few things up and then we heard the sweetest sound we had not heard for years – yep the phone was ringing. It was an unbelievable joyous occasion it really was – after well over two years of not being connected to the outside world we were suddenly in the loop. It was truly an amazing thing. If you want to try it here is the number 00542283420316- go on please call us we love it when that phone rings its music to our ears and all it took was as the song goes a little patience - can’t guarantee we will answer it cos we may still be celebrating.
I f someone asked me what was the greatest invention of the 20th century for me it has to be the phone – without it for few a day’s life can be just a tad difficult without it for few years and it’s just antisocial .
This is David Cummings alias the English Gaucho off to make a few calls to my Mum and Dad in the UK – it’s been too long!!!
Llamanos por favor!!!!