Scary Indian fuse boxSo, it’s been an eventful time here at Rethink Mansions – a hot water pipe burst and sprayed nearly boiling water in through one of the bathroom windows, the electrics fried possibly as a result and I’ve had an annoying time with my broadband.

Broadband provided by my favourite company – airtel. Airtel being only marginally less annoying than my bank. I may have discussed their rubbish nature a few time before…

Anyway, as I know I have mentioned before, I live in a very fancy housing complex and there is a wifi router built into the central hall of each house. Mine was installed and set up while I was at work – so when I got in, I was just handed a bit of paper with an inexplicable password on it (I mean really why don’t people use wep2? Is it so hard to switch to a secure system with memorable passwords). Anyhoo, I logged in, wasn’t too impressed with the speed or quality of reception and so didn’t use it much.

It was only when I finally got my strength up to tackle the issue of having four phone jacks in the house but only having one of them attached to the outside phone lines that I realised what my real WiFi issue was. Drum roll please.  You see, turns out that the password I had… wasn’t actually for the box in my house at all. Noooo, the management had given me the password for one of my neighbours routers rather than mine. And I’d put money on the fact it was so they didn’t have to fix the issues with the one in my house. And me being ignorant of the fact I was using someone elses, I simply thought the reception was a bit rubbish.

So dear neighbour, thank you for inadvertently allowing me to use your broadband… sorry it took me almost 9 months to work that out though.

Anyway, so I had an issue with my broadband – an issue other than stealing wifi from my neighbours and not realising it – and I called Airtel support. This is probably one of the most annoying things any human can do on the planet… they tell you they can fix your issue in 11 hours or less. And they do by the simple expedient of deleting your logged problem after 11 hours – so for a persistent issue you have to keep calling back every 11 hours to make sure it’s still live. Not actually being fixed, just still existing as a complaint…

And don’t get me started on the trauma of getting the Airtel man to actually arrive. I had a whole day of calls every two hours saying ‘I will be there in 30 minutes madam’ and of course each time he simply didn’t arrive. Only for him to call again two hours later. Eventually someone entirely different showed up two days later. grrr. Airtel, how I love them.

Anyway, when I eventually managed to get an Airtel engineer in the house, he pointed out there was no power to the WiFi modem in the house (this was kind of irrelevant by that point as I’d bribed him to set up my own brought from the UK modem for me).

So, not only was I not using my WiFi,  and I didn’t have the password for it, but the router in my house wasn’t even switched on. And not only not switched on,  it didn’t even have power to the socket. None. You really would have thought I’d have noticed this – though in my defense the router, is quite high up the wall in the stairwell and I couldn’t actually see all this without standing on a chair. And oddly, I’d never felt the urge to do that till there was an actual problem.

So, I called the building people and asked the electrician to turn up and sort it out. The good one, the one who seems to know what he’s doing. The one who was in no way involved in the masking tape air conditioning fiasco of a few months back.  He really does stand head and shoulders above the others in terms of ability and brains…. so this fine champion of electrics arrives, and the first thing he does – the very first thing, before he has any idea what’s going on – the first thing he does is stick his screwdriver right up to the handle into the socket. Not in a, ‘let me lift this security flap out of the way’, but in a really ‘I don’t’ care if I die kind of way…’

Although thinking about it, perhaps he knew the truth that he was utterly safe – because when he pulled the socket out to show me –there wasn’t a single wire back there. No electrics, no phone, no broadband cabling. Nothing. Just a complete sham. Grrr.

And of course 6 hours after he sorts out the electrics so that the router can be plugged in – and by the by actually wired up the lights in the hall so they worked. Another mystery solved, as to why the switch didn’t work for those (they weren’t connected either) – 6 hours later the whole house electrics fried.

Sigh. and that’s why I’ve not had the nerve to change the light fittings down stairs yet. Electrics are a basic art here, but dark one. And one akin to black magic.


If you’ve enjoyed this post, check out these other tenuously related ones that might pique your interest

Wires jammed straight into the socket
Electrifying passersby
Still electric after all these years

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