Today has been a very frustrating day. To begin with I was in Cheltenham, even though I needed to be at home. But I hadn't slept the night before so I was way too tired to drive home yesterday evening. And Kieron said that I could arrange to have BT send out an engineer the same day to get his phone and broadband working, or I could go to Starbucks and use their hotspot. So I should be able to send work emails either way. No problem.
So I called the super secret BT engineering scheduling number right after eight, as Kieron had said. There the friendly man at the other end told me that somebody had closed my case, so he was unable to help me. I needed to call 151 and report a fault. No open case, no engineer.
No problem, I'll just call the fault line. The woman I talked to there was trying all sorts of things to get me to not book a time with an engineer. When she ran out of things she thought I should do instead, she finally gave me an appointment the next day. In other words, I wouldn't be able to get Internet access at Kieron's place today.
No problem, there's a Starbucks within walking distance from Kieron's place. After a little more work, I pack up my things and stroll over to Starbucks. There I try to connect to the T-Mobile hotspot. It doesn't work. I follow the instructions in the little leaflet the staff had given me. It still doesn't work. I thought that was very strange because I've been able to use hotspots in other places. So I call the T-Mobile hotspot helpline and get a guy named Andrew on the phone. He probably wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer but he stepped me through lots of network settings. In the end he gave up and advised me to go to another hotspot. I'd already wasted lots of time so I thanked him for his advice and went home. There I texted my project manager that I had been unable to connect to the Internet and wouldn't be able to send him the files I'd promised last week.
That would be a problem, it turned out. Apparently the client had scheduled a meeting at two to go through the files I'd promised to send through. It was now 12.30. But the PM said that if I just had a memory card, I could transfer the files onto that and send them from a computer in the library. No problem, I said. I have several cards, a reader and a library that's even closer than the Starbucks.
So off I go to the library. It's one o'clock but I get a computer right away. There I set up my little reader and transfer the files to the PC. Unfortunately the PC won't connect to GT's web mail. It doesn't say why but I suspect that it's because of the faulty certificate. So I wait for the agonisingly slow browser to take me to Hotmail instead. When the page comes up, I realise that I have no idea what my password is. Except that it's a string of random numbers, letters and punctuation marks. No joy.
But that's OK because I can use my Demon email instead and send the files to the project manager. No problem. So I write an email to him and look for the button that says Attachments. I look very carefully in the middle of the page and in all four corners. No button. There's no little paper clip, no matter how hard I look.
But that's no problem, because I can use YouSendIt.com
instead. In the end I manage to send the three files through YouSendIt.com. It's a great service and it's free for single files. I'm eternally grateful to them for making me look less like a total flake.
So I text the PM that I've sent the files and ask if he's got them. Immediately I get a text back from T-Mobile telling me that I'm out of credit and that the text hasn't been sent. That's when I couldn't decide whether to scream or to cry.