April 29, 2012

So, I’ve been ‘obsessed’ with this trip to France.


I have posted links to Facebook, Twitter, this blog…  But it seems that the person in number one place, has a lot more contacts than I do!  Oh well.  Persistence.


Hopefully, the more I post it, the more votes I’ll get.  I’ve even created an event and invited all my friends on Facebook to respond.  Apparently, it is not necessary to accept the invitation, nor is it necessary to LIKE the post.  Just tapping the link will accept the vote.  The more people who tap, the more votes, and the higher chance of winning.

Now, I’m sitting about 9th position.  With only close to 200 votes, and over 30 applicants, I suppose that’s pretty good.  That means I’m in the top 25%.  Now, how to get into the top 1%?

I suppose some people would call this begging.  Others would call it egotism.  Others, self-promoting.  The way I look at it is, if I don’t promote myself, who will?

A few years ago, living in Ottawa, I was living with a guy who really enjoyed having house parties.  The house we occupied was, for all intents, split level.  It was something like 4 stories tall, but with the house being ‘split’ in two, it seemed more like we had 7 stories.  Great house for having parties. The whole place was sort of open concept as well.

Anyway, one of his theories about having these house parties, was to invite twice as many people as you hoped would attend.  He figured that, if he invited say, 100 people, then only 50 would show up.  The second part to the theory, was that 1/2 of those people would bring someone with them.  SO…  invite 100 people, and 75 show up – 50 you invited, and 25 uninvited (but accepted).  Interesting theory, and, well, it worked.  The thing is, he would invite over 250 people, what with all the flyers sent out to the neighbours and the bars we visited!  I’m surprised the house didn’t collapse at these parties!  But, I will tell you, it sure was fun…!!

So, I’m applying the same theory here.  Saying that I have about 900 ‘friends’ on Facebook, the thousands of people on Twitter, the few hundred who read this blog, I’m hoping that even 10% of these people will vote.  That could conceivably, put me over the top!  However, I’m sure that the person in first place (so far) has thought of this as well.  Now, if each person sends to one other person who will vote… well, let’s just say, I’d have a lot of souvenirs to purchase!

The weather here has been crazy.  Rainy, sunny, muggy, hot, dry, breezy, windy… and that’s just one day!  I’m surprised that not everyone has a cold or feeling sick.

Another issue I’m having a problem with – AGAIN – is with Chung-hwa Telecom.  Chung-hwa Telecom, as I’ve been informed about lately, was originally set up  to deal with the needs of the Federal Government of Taiwan.  It was never to be a ‘public’ telephone company.  However, over the years, with the new cellphones available, and more so, with the iPhone introduction, Chung-hwa Telecom became (at first) the only company to deal with if one wanted the iPhone 3Gs.

I suppose, in retrospect, I was coerced into buying the iPhone 3Gs.  If I was able to read Chinese, and had been able to do a bit of comparison shopping, I might have chosen a different phone.  However, I trusted the person giving me the information.

IPhone 3Gs was introduced to Taiwan at the same time as everyone else around the world (now that I know the information).  Chung-hwa Telecom was awarded the contract to exclusively provide the iPhone and 3G service to Taiwan.  I’m sure in a few years, information will emerge that proves otherwise, but as far as it stands, they were the winners of the contract from Apple.

When the iPhone 3Gs was released to every other country in the known world (and who knows, maybe beyond this planet), Taiwan was the only country to NOT release the iPhone to its customers at the time.  They apparently gave reasons such as the 3G service was not in place, had not been tested properly, the iPhones hadn’t arrived… After about 3 months, as more and more TAIWANESE people got pissed off, and rumours started that Chung-hwa didn’t have the customer base it had projected, Chung-hwa reluctantly released the iPhone to its customers.  Those who had already plunked down 20some thousand NT dollars and signed 2-year contracts with Chung-hwa.  Chung-hwa agreed, so as to appease the uneasiness of their customers, to give them a 500nt ‘credit’ on their phone bills.

Whoopie!  500nt!!

Nonetheless, as for my situation, I was a) given the wrong phone and b) have had to replace the phone, not once, twice or three times, but FOUR times during the warranty period.  After warranty, the phone had to be replaced again (total of 5 times), at a cost of just over 1900nt!

At that time, the iPhone 4G was being introduced.  All the ‘stuff’ for the iPhone 3G was pulled from the shelves, and now, is not available.  Like everything else new, once the ‘new’ phone was available, the previous models became dinosaurs.  That is, there is absolutely no more items available for the iPhone 3G.  As I’ve heard, that is the same as in Canada.

Back to Chung-hwa.  Once my ‘contract’ was fulfilled, I began having problems with Chung-hwa Telecom.  I’ve always paid the bill on time.  I’ve never been late.  However, now that I am just a customer, and being unable to speak Chinese, and having to deal with a “Ms. He” (?), the ONLY English-speaking representative in a 10-story building on Simen Road in Tainan, I am treated as if I was a delinquent!  I have asked nicely if I could pay ahead of time.  I have asked to have the date moved to a more convenient date of my paydays.  I have asked that my bills be sent to my new address.  I have further requested to have my bills sent to my workplace.  What do I get?  Constant nagging phone calls from Ms. He.  She calls me every month approximately 7 or 8 times per month.  She then calls my workplace at least 3 or 4 times.  Each time, if I don’t pay the bill EXACTLY the day she calls, without having received the bill, the phone is disconnected the next day.

I am so tired and pissed.  The phone bill used to be about 1000nt per month.  Now it’s about 3000nt per month.  Why?  I have no idea.  I don’t MAKE phone calls.  I rarely use the internet service available on the iPhone.  However, my phone bill is in the 3000nt range each month, and she, nor anyone else I’ve show the billings to, can explain why MY phone bill is so much more expensive than anyone else I know.

In fact, even the schools that have land lines serviced by Chung-hwa Telecom, and receive and make thousands of phone calls per month, don’t have bills nearly as high as mine.

I need a new phone company!


That’s it, that’s all… for now!


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