I would like to share the events of the last 2weeks with you all. I have been offline and out of contact for this period for a very good reason. Two good reasons in fact, Testra and Activate internet and phone services. I have made the story reasonably brief and deleted the actual language used however your free to use your imagination.
It started when the internet suddenly stopped on one of the stations, (we use the internet to contact buyers, neighbours, suppliers and friends), so I trustingly called the tech support number and after a couple of hours on hold listening to the most depressing music I was answered by a cheery young man who after a brief conversation had no idea what the problem was but suggested my laptop was at fault. Not being really computer savvy I accepted this and rang a private technition in Darwin who assured me that the problem was not my laptop but rather Activates equipment was faulty.
So it was back to tech support (Now day 2), I again went through the troubleshooting this time with another young man (but equally cheery). Still no luck at all but this one suggested that we hadnt paid the bill. I then rang the accounts department and confirmed that the payment was successful and that that was not the problem. Meanwhile I am trying to contract muster, break in 2 horses and other general station duties. So on Day 3 of no internet I rang another technition who was most uninterested in my plight and had no solutions to offer. I then had a meltdown and proceeded to explain that he would send me a technition who did know something and the problem would be fixed that day if he had to hitchhike from Melbourne to do it! I then had to put up with the technition saying that it wasnt his problem and he resented me being upset with him. Well that went down well and considering I had put up with no end of mindless music, hours on hold, 3 days of being shuffled around their departments and finally being told by a fellow that he didnt care if the service he was meant to provide wasnt working, I think the paddock language I resorted to in the moment was certainly warrented! Anyway I found out an astounding thing after 3 days of being nice and compliant and getting nowhere a massive meltdown and the sort of language that can stop a charging bull got my internet fixed in five minutes. Amazing!
But thats not the end of the saga! Oh no dear reader it continues! After this process I returned home to our home property and passed through Darwin on my way. I rang home a couple of times and tried to contact John who was home alone and supposedly slashing firebreaks. I wanted to know if I could get anything in town for him and asked that he call me back asap. Well as I shopped it occured to me that I had not heard from him all day and had left 3 messages on our message bank and he had obviously not been home for lunch. I imagined the only reason he wouldnt call me was if he had come to grief on the tractor (its happened before). We are notorious for keeping in contact. Anyway I decided to abandon all shopping and race home. I drove in to an empty homestead and really began to worry until I saw John happily working in the shed and wondering why I hadnt called to say I was on my way home as he could have got some stuff in town. It turns out the phone had a major fault and wasnt working. 120 phones in the district were out and it took 4 days to repair it and get basic services. Meantime anyone who called was directed to our message bank and told we would return their call as if the phone was working normally. We got plenty of visits from worried clients and family who called and called and recived no answer. On reporting the fault in person in a Testra shop we were assured that there was no issue in our area and we could go home knowing the phone was working. 4 days later the phone came on.
Since we have no mobile coverage in our area i thought i would email a relative to report the phone fault. Guess what...yep no internet! That has taken 4 days since the phone was fixed to fix the internet with constant calls to Testra tech support, fortunately after 4 hours on hold and speaking to 15 individual people most of whom were not working in tech support and were very rude about being disturbed! I got onto a great bloke in QLD who worked hard and finally fixed the issue. He confessed he doesnt know what caused it, cant say if it will happen again and has never seen a fault like it before but he did eventually fix it.
I now have my intenet and phone back and hope it stays connected. However I have done a head count and just might have enough horses to run a local pony express and am seriously thinking of investing in carrier pigeons, just on spec! So if you called or emailed in the last 2 weeks and recieved no reply I am sorry but now you know! And if the fellow who fixed it all from QLD is reading this Mate theres a bar stool up here with your name on it!
Hi Rashida, yeah so much for rual emergency comms...not much at all.
a friend and I also debated Pigeons a few years back, we were only 100km apart so it would have been possible.
alans comment re pirated ISP's is interesting.
friends just copped a bill for a supposed unpaid for 26 month bill from a company they and I have never heard of. and never recieved a bill from, naturally, as they are internet scammers.
all the while telstra and Optus had been the paid billers. yet Telstra refused....to cancel and change their number as the line..THEIRS..was the subject of a billing dipute?
what? Paddock Language, what a Polite way to phrase it:-)
Luckily my friends had kept 10!! years of accounts. mind you 3 days in the office will not be refunded them.
what they also happened to find was fortutious, Optus had been double billing for 3 years! drawing the account 2x from seperate accounts, and gee, NO ONE had ever???(sure) wondered at the anomaly..
of course the cannot refund the money? Crap! they can offer credit. ha ha uh uh. so there was a bright side to it, sort of?
I posted on the horse lovers page, re maybe? getting a give away horse. well Dougie arrives tomorrow.
I wont be sleeping much, I am over the moon.
Paddock language indeed Laurel. I can safely say that if the call was recorded it can now be used as a correctional device for improving efficiency haha. For the last 2 weeks my business has resembled theirs in that there was no communication, service or ability to fix the problem, thankfully I sorted it before we got a matching reputation.
The biggest problem was that all the gear (phone, modem etc) was sending signals that said it was fine and so they didnt believe us when we said it didnt work. As I reasoned with a young lady in the Telstra office, why would I drive 150km when I could have made a phone call? Although a young man on a very distant line and with a very thick accent informed me that I would not be shouting at him if he was standing in front of me, of which I informed him that even my partner had left the house and the horses had moved out of the houseyard sensing the rage surrounding me, However it would be to my great satisfaction if he was standing in front of me! You can imagine why!
Thats terrible Al! The cheeky buggers! Mind you 30hrs is a great effort! We often have a problem when they send technitions as we request that the tech calls us from the closest town with his estimated time of arrival. The lady in Melbourne told nnot to worry the tech would just sing out from the gate. I informed her that he would want to be loud as the gate is 7km from the house. Her reply "thats impossible!". I hope she never goes to a station where it's 100km from the house!
Its not all bad though I have had some laughs like when my stud billy goat was feeling rather well (curtesy of me adjusting his diet) , and had serviced the female goats, the poddy calf and was on the prowl for a new "friend" to relieve the boredom of lazing on the lawn. When as luck would have it a shiny car arrived and a man got out. Rossi the goat watched carefully as the man messed around and finally bent over the inspection pit. I had been watching was out the office door and galloping lead in hand, but Rossi was proving the 4 legs are faster than two! He charged across the paddock in delight and assumed the position on top of the technition! The poor man looked as shocked as the poddy calf had looked! He yelled and jumped and tried to stand up straight but Rossi was in professional mode among other things and as a full grown boer billy he was a strong boy. Im afraid I wasnt the best of help to the poor man as I was helpless with laughter but between peals managed to secure the goat and drag him to his enclosure. I then made a strong cuppa for the technition and assured him that that sort of thing really isnt common place and it was simply a case of wrong place very bad timing. So perhaps there is some revenge to be had and possibly some understanding as to why we have communications issues! Still if they are going to behave like this Ill be sending a truck load of billy goats their way!
my 2 b****** were in season a couple of weeks back..and the 2 male dogs..well lets just say I DO NOT bend over if anything falls to the floor, as by week 2 1/2 anything at all is fair game, like your place even my chooks look worried :-)
Im flattered that you thought the story was fit to share, Rossi would be pretty impressed too if he was reading this, we always said that one day he'd make the newspaper for his doings!
Fortunatly the phones and internet are still working so we are not cut off from the world. UHF radios on the other hand have reared their non working heads! This is never ending! I have found that showing the technology a running tap as a threat can work as well! ;-)
You blokes are certainly not alone. My tale of woe went on in similar vane to your's over a couple of weeks, endless hours, endless transfers. Finally got an Aussie accent in Rockhampton who started action that resolved the problem wih a Telstra wi-fi modem. Now i keep getting credit notes for $311.3911 but it never seems to make it onto my monthly account.
PS I ended up telling them I wanted their employee identity to include with a written complaint to the Telecommnication Industry Ombudsman. I meant it but got the probem fixed before I complained.