Despite our best efforts yesterday morning, I still found myself frustratingly disconnected from the ether by the end of the day.
We got up very early for a Saturday and used some of our own secret recipe hair-of-the-dog and a couple of fags to surface before chasing off to deliver Geoffrey to the doggie parlour for a much-needed shave. Our main destination was the local MTN shop where we'd blacklist my stolen phone and get a replacement sim card.
The "shop" turned out to be a cubicle nestled in the hot bowels of the Jacaranda Centre where the pimply consultant had to call the service centre from his own cellphone. He held for exactly eight minutes before he got through even though it was only 9:30am.
After he explained our convoluted requests he chanted some cryptic codes over the line. Silence followed, punctuated by bursts of furious typing from the other end. Then I heard a metallic voice inform the consultant that the handset was linked to another number and that they were unable to blacklist it as requested. Very KGB.
Turns out the pimply consultant who'd assisted us back when we upgraded to the Torches had mixed up the sim cards when she put them in the identical phones. The criminals are the only winners in this one, I'm afraid. We have been stopped by a huge wad of red tape. Unfortunate it is, but not unexpected.
If you ever encounter a rather fetching BlackBerry Torch 9810 with IMEI 357696040493839, please remember that it is, in fact, my very own stolen phone and treat the criminal user thereof with as much unkindness as you can muster.
Anyway, MTN was also unable to process the sim swap request. Apparently you need a sworn statement - a fact our poopy service provider neglects to mention on their obtuse website.
On the way to collect a perfumed Geoffrey later I visited another local MTN shop. We've been loyal customers for more than three years with never a late payment, after all. The pimply but enthusiastic consultant really wanted to help me but sadly their server was down and I was referred back to the first store.
Still I refused to give up, if only for the sake of my mental health. Connection withdrawal can be severely depressing so, this morning I was up at the crack of dawn again. I showered and had some fags and by 9:00 am I stood bristling with anxiety outside a third, more distant MTN shop in another $uburb.
The entire thing was a breeze and I even paid R1 (about $US0.00) less for the transaction than I would have at the other two shops. I trembled when the nice lady handed me a delicious looking yellow sim card. I hear that money can't buy happiness... but I must say that the rich really have nicer shops.
By 10:30,amongst others, my e-mail, BBM, Twitter and Facebook had been re-installed and reconnected. I was able to mow the damp lawns peacefully knowing that I was gliding down the information highway once again.
Until better arrangements can be made, I will be using a vintage hand-me-down Bold 9900. I won't say it's a brick but if f I had enough of these I could build you a real sturdy house. Also, the asthmatic battery lasts barely half a day. I know I sound ungrateful but I am very thankful to have a backup phone. Besides, it's got the best darn' keyboard I've ever experienced on any phone.
Written by I
Sent from my vintage BlackBerry® wireless device