Remember when it used to take weeks to get a telephone connected?
Those bad old days are back.
Last month we applied for a connection for a new staff house on a dairy farm and were told someone would be out to do it a few days later.
He arrived when he was supposed to but took one look and said he couldn’t do the connection, someone else would have to do it.
We were told that someone would be out the following week.
That week came and went but no-one turned up.
My farmer phoned Telecom and was told someone would definitely be in touch the following morning.
No-one called so my farmer phoned again and was told that the job couldn’t be done. There wasn’t enough of whatever was needed at the exchange and it could be some months before there was.
Last week, about a week after that conversation, my farmer got a phone call, while we were driving to Christchurch, saying someone would be out to do something to a grey box in the middle of December.
He explained what we’d been told so far and asked if that meant that whatever was lacking at the exchange had been sorted.
I was in the car with him and could hear the conversation on the speaker.
We both got the impression she didn’t know anything about the exchange but before we could pursue the conversation, reception dropped.
As her number had been withheld we couldn’t call back and she hasn’t tried calling us again.
That was five days ago and we still don’t know exactly when someone will be coming to do whatever needs to be done with the grey box nor whether if, when that’s done, the phone will be able to be connected.
Contrast that with the service from Sky.
Someone turned up at the designated time, put up a dish, connected the box and television – and it worked.
Connecting a television and a telephone are different jobs but there’s no reason the service we’re getting from Telecom shouldn’t be up the standard as that we got from Sky.