On the Phone with Tech Support

I wrote this exactly five years ago after going grey on hold to the local phone company and a frustrating conversation with an agent. If you’ve ever lived on a small island, the price of telecommunications can often feel inversely proportionate to the reliability and quality of the service that you actually get. I’m posting it all these years later after a particularly frustrating weekend without broadband or mobile service. Five years later, nothing has changed.

Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash

LIME: Thank you for calling LIME. My name is Sassy. How can I help you tonight?
ME: My broadband and voice mail are down again.
LIME: Again?
ME: Yes, again. As in once more.
LIME: Down where, sir?
ME: Down the loo, Sassy
LIME: Sorry. I don’t follow….
ME: I had broadband and voicemail on Sunday, none on Monday, slow on Tuesday and none today. Are we on an alternating service plan?
LIME: I’m sorry, sir. I don’t follow.
ME: Okay, I’ll leave the irony and sarcasm out. When will you have my services up and running again?
LIME: Are you sure they’re not working, sir?
ME: I’m pretty sure, Miss. I was watching Desperate Housewives on Netflix when it went down.
LIME: Oh I love that show! Did you try to unplug then reconnect the….
ME: Yes. Three times.
LIME: Oh. Well, let me look into that for you. Now you say you’ve unplugged and reset the…
ME: Yup. Three times.
LIME: I don’t seem to be able to see a problem from where I’m sitting sir. Why don’t you try unplugging…
ME: YOU MEAN A FOURTH TIME?!
LIME: Everything seems to be working fine from here…
ME: Why? Are you getting season five of Desperate Housewives on Netflix?
LIME: No sir. I mean that everything seems to look fine with your services from where I sit.
ME: And where is that?
LIME: Sir?
ME: Where are you located right now?
LIME: El Salvador, sir.
ME: So I guess watching TV at your house is out of the question.
LIME: I’m sorry sir, we don’t…
ME: No, no. It’s ok. Just trying to keep my blood pressure down. So what you’re telling me is that there’s nothing wrong with my broadband…
LIME: That’s right sir. But why don’t I do a systems check and call you back?
ME: If I don’t answer will you leave a message?
LIME: Certainly.
ME: So what I said earlier about having no voice mail….?
LIME: Oh. Right. Ha. Hee-hee…
ME: Yeah. Funny.
LIME: Could I put you on hold again sir?
ME: Sure. While you do that, I’ll get on the other line to Digicel...
LIME: No sir. This is LIME. You know? LIME. L for landline, I for Internet, M for Mobile and E for……umm E for…….ummm….
ME: Surely you’re not serious.
LIME: No sir, my name is Sassy. It’s short for Sassia.
ME: OK, Sassy. Thanks for your help. I’m sure I’ll be able to figure it out. Never mind the rest…
LIME: Oh I’m so glad we could be of help! Is there anything else I can do for you tonight?
ME: Oh God. Please. No. I beg you…
LIME: Then I thank you for calling LIME and wish you a pleasant evening!

“It’s very difficult to keep the line between the past and the present. You know what I mean? Awfully difficult!” ~Edith Bouvier Beale

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