Hello LiP readers new and returning!!! I want to first thank the many readers who have followed my story so long and have written many kind words of advice, and support. Not to mention the readers that have simply enjoyed following my journey here to the Philippines. I appreciate all your kindness, and apologize for not getting on here sooner. As you will see though, I have continued to write articles, even though they have not been posted. I could flood the LiP site for a good couple of weeks everyday with a new article on all the things I have experienced. Some good, some bad, and some just different.
So, what has happened to allow me to FINALLY have easy and convenient access to LiP, and provide reading to you all? Well, today marks the day of a very long journey finally hitting a turning point which is making my life easier, but also allowing me to easily post new articles on LiP. Today I have internet access, AND I have my trusty desktop computer out of the box and setup temporarily giving me access to the WWW. Yes, that’s right, the WORLD WIDE WEB!! You know, that thing that Al Gore invented!! LOL!! Ok, I’m wise cracking, but I’m happy to have the internet.
The internet. It’s a great tool used to provide the multitudes with access to information from all over the world. But, what I found nearly impossible, was finding the building which houses the office for the internet company I had found was supposed to provide the best connection reliability and speed. I speak of PLDT. Now, many of you out there have your preference of companies. I know. I’ve heard it already. But I knew of only two. PLDT and Smart Bro. That said, what I found interesting is that most people could not tell me much about either. Only that Smart bro was not good, but PLDT was good. Good connections, and reliability. Sounds good to me! So, off to the main office in Dagupan City! It seemed that while everyone thought PLDT was a better source of internet connection, NOBODY could tell me where it was!! Everyone had an idea for me to go look, but NONE was right. We finally found it, by accident!! Yes, accident. I’m talking about driving down a narrow road that I would not turn my car around, and accidentally driving past it!!
I stopped in three months ago to inquire about the service. I was alone that day and got some information. The biggest thing for me was finding that I could NOT apply for it. Or, so they said. My wife would need to apply for it, as I did not have my ACR card, or immigration card. Ok. No problem. I would simply bring her there one day to apply. Not a big deal, in my mind. Problem is, it is an American mind, not a Filipino mind. Too many minds.
After a couple of weeks of getting the required documents my wife would need, I was ready to go. Problem was, we were so busy getting moved into our house. So, it was postponed. Luckily, a team of promotion staff were walking around the neighborhood and I asked them to the house to talk about it more. Once again, I was alone. Why is it that I am always alone when it comes to PLDT? I may never know. I am shown a few options and I take the one with a roof mounted antennae for the wireless connection. It comes with a tablet and phone as well. Sounds good to me. Right? WRONG!
We receive a text about a month after the application has been completed. It says to come pay the installation fees before the installation would be completed. Still sounds good. We go to the office and pay the fees, and I am told it would be installed within a month. After a month of waiting, and no replies to my text messages, I return to the BIG CITY to inquire what is going on. I am given a phone SIM and told I could get online now. Excuse me? Nobody has come to my house to install anything yet. Install, they ask? Install what? Ok. I have to tell you, I am more than a little concerned at this point. I tell them what I requested, and they tell me that I requested a wireless hotspot and not the hardware I thought I was asking for. I’ll leave that first problem as a communication/translation problem and not being screwed. But, afterwards, I think it was just a scam trying to get them a bonus for getting someone to subscribe.
I am told that what I need is something different, as I want my desktops connected, and not just wireless devices. I am told I would have to apply AGAIN for the right equipment. After more than a month, and no connection yet, I return to the office. This time, I’m ready to yell and take names. I ask to speak with the manager as soon as I walk in the door. I’m ushered to his office where we are politely greeted. I describe to him all that has happened and he is disgusted. He tells me I am the second one to come to him with the same problem. He further tells me that I can get a DSL line and don’t have to go wireless!!! AWESOME!! LAND LINE PLEASE!!! I’m happy again… sort of. I still have been through a mess trying to get the internet. And I still don’t have the internet. But, talking with the manager seems to be helping me realize my goal of internet connection.
Now, I had to name names and tell them who screwed up the entire process. I told them the names I knew, and they brought in one young man. “Is this the guy”? they ask. I laugh and try to make it as harmless as possible. Yes, that is him. Even without a police lineup, I point fingers and give names. I hope he still has his job, as long as he doesn’t screw anyone up like I was again.
So, I am told the internet would be installed the very next day! Wow. I should have talked to the manager before. The next day I wait. And I wait, and I wait. No show!! Seriously? Not good. The second day however I receive a phone call to make sure they have me set for the right plan. I tell them which one I wanted, and they said the internet would be installed within a week. Ok. I’m still not thrilled, but it’s like going to a accident scene and trying not to look. You know it isn’t going to be pretty, but you still have to do it. I’ve got too much pain and anguish invested in this internet connection that I have to see it through to the end if it kills me!
Guess what? The very next day I receive a call from the installer. He’s on his way to my house! But, I’m not home. I tell them I am on the way, and make haste to my house. The internet is installed and I am sitting pretty (as pretty as I can be) surfing the web on my wife’s laptop.
As I sit here now, typing this article, I have since setup my desktop to perform my simple task of providing information so that others can benefit from my pain. So, I tell you this… DO NOT expect to have the internet fast. If you do, you will be setting yourself up for a disappointment.
Until next time, paalam, ingat, and God bless!