Thursday, 10 February 2011

Un-businesslike BT Broadband

Just after I'd I finished Matins and checked my emails, the funeral director's car arrived to pick me up to take me to 'the Res' for the funeral. The church was three quarters full. I couldn't help noticing that the empty quarter was a section right across the middle of the nave of about half a dozen rows. The church had filled up from the back forwards and from the front backwards - the very front rows being reserved for immediate family.
It drizzled gently as we gathered around the grave in Western Cemetery after. The closes family members threw roses on to the coffin after the committal. I was left a bit curious by the fact that several mourners held on to some of their roses, until I noticed them quietly moving over to a grave nearby. Here another close relation of the deceased was buried, who'd died of cancer at 25, leaving a small baby - now in his teens, visiting his mother's grave. The mother of the deceased told me that her father had died young leaving her mother with six children to fend for. So she was no stranger to tragic early bereavement. The way they all stuck together and supported each other was most impressive.

Yet again I was able to get a lift into town, rather than back home. I arrived in time to attend the midday Eucharist at St John's and greet the celebrant, Canon Alan Luff, who is about to spend three months doing a locum at St John's Territet, at the other end of lake Geneva from where we lived. Looking at their website, they seem to realise how lucky they are to have a visit from one of Anglicanism's eminent hymnologists. I hope they treat him well.

After this I went to the office. We've been without internet since Tuesday, and each afternoon hours have been spent trying to contact British Telecom, waiting in call queues, or machine minding while painfully slow diagnostic tests are run remotely from somewhere up in Scotland. We did exactly the same tests two days running to no avail. Each time we were talking to different people (at least four) and it was hard to ascertain if there was any communication between them or any shared record of actions taken that all could access. Tuesday a recorded message informed us that 5,000 people in South Wales were suffering problems with broadband service, but since then, nothing further has been mentioned.

This afternoon our service was up and running for all of half a minute, before it died and sent the router into a cycle of endless reboots. So at least we know it's not a physical problem between us and the central exchange, but rather some data snarl up which nobody knows quite how to untangle or even identify. On top of this BT are billing us heavily for line re-location which comes free as part of our service agreement. There seems to be equal chaos regarding management of our account. Maybe the two issues are linked.

Once services are re-instated we shall of course issue a fulsome complaint and expect compensation. But will we any longer be able to recall the many problems we've had with our Premium Business service since we relocated seven months ago? Of the twelve hours I've worked this week so far, half have been spent on the phone trying to resolve this problem.

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