21 May 2014


Just about four weeks ago, Bill called Eircom and started the process of getting home internet access. At that time, he was told it would take 5-10 working days. After taking into consideration the weekends and bank holidays, we are now on working day 18 with no modem. Bill is getting as tired as I am of going to the library for internet, so yesterday while we were there, he went to the Eircom website and began a live chat with Anthony. He explained to Anthony that he had not yet received a modem or any other communication beyond the letter we got a couple of weeks ago telling us how “delighted” Eircom was to welcome us. Anthony felt the best thing to do would be to transfer their little chat session to a different department, but alas, everyone there must’ve been at lunch, because there was no one to chat with. Anthony did give Bill a phone number to call later.

Later on, Bill took the phone and went into the bedroom--probably so he would not have to look at me while he conversed with the Eircom person. I have expressed my thoughts quite clearly on this whole situation and if it was up to me, Eircom would not be a part of our lives at all. The only reason I have not simply gone out and bought some kind of pay-as-you-go device is because I figured as soon as I did that, the modem would arrive and we’d have wasted a bunch of money. I needn’t have worried. As I sat here in the living room and heard Bill finally connect with a live person and explain the situation, I listened to him say, “You mean no one has worked on it since?” Pause. “How come?” he asked, “Do you know?” According to Bill, the reply was, “No, I don’t. I’m sorry.” I am unsure why Bill did not cancel the work order at this point, but he opted not to do so.  I am told we should have the modem in a couple of days. I do not know whether this is “working days” and now we can also wonder what exactly constitutes a “working day” at Eircom. Considering that it has now been 27 days since the original contact was made, and the work order was never submitted to the proper people, perhaps “working days” do not occur all that frequently. In any case, this fellow told Bill that “by this time next week, you’ll have internet.” Personally, I will believe this when I experience it. Who knows what festive things will be set in motion if the modem ever arrives. Does the phone line even work? No need to worry about that now, though. I will take one hassle at a time, thanks very much!

This reminds me of one of my Eskimo friends in an Alaskan village. I was staying with the family and he was working as a casual laborer for the Native corporation. He was in his mid 60s then. He would leave for work at 8, be home at 10 for a cup of tea and a lie down on the couch, back to work at 10:30 or 11, home at noon for lunch, back to work at 1ish, home at 2ish for a repeat of the morning tea break, back to work at 2:30 or 3, and then home by 4:30. He told me that since he was a casual laborer, he was being casual.

The other day when we took a long walk by the river, we ended up seeing this little Eircom building at the end of our walk. It’s the engineering office, or something. It was empty. Non-working day or just a lunch break? Who knows?

On a happier note, we stopped in at An Post (the post office) yesterday morning to pick up a package. The slip had been left in our box the day before. It was a book that Bill was thrilled to have once again. When we were making decisions about what to bring with us, struggling with weight limits, and being constrained by the size of a couple of our suitcases, he reluctantly made the decision to put a book that he really loved on the donation pile. It’s a book of Frank Hurley’s photos taken on one of the Shackleton expeditions to Antarctica. It’s a beautiful book, but one that is large and heavy--it weighs 6 pounds. He decided to donate that one so he’d have room for several others. He found a copy on ebay last week. It was priced low and shipping wasn’t much, either. It was coming from the UK. So he bought it and it came yesterday. It was fun watching him with it--he was so happy to have the book back. It was one of those situations that turned out perfectly all around. The wonderful library in Brunswick will either add his old book to their collection or sell it at the upcoming annual book sale (which should have quite a lot of former Burke books!). Bill has his book back and did not have to haul it around with him--that dash through Heathrow would have been that much more difficult had he been carrying this large and heavy book. He was technically over the weight limit for his carry-ons anyway (I probably was, too) and he was lugging a large backpack and a Chico bag with stuff in it--including another big photography book. This one is even more cumbersome than the one he carried, so it was much easier to pick it up at the post office, put it in his smaller backpack, and leisurely walk home with it :-)


  1. I am soooo loving living in Ireland through you two.... thank you..... sorry for the "issues" that have come up... but makes for a great story... :)

    1. Thanks, Rhonda--glad you're enjoying the blog :-) Telling stories about what's happening helps keep me from going nuts--LOL--and when I look at it from a distance, it is funny.