Saturday, 8 September 2012

Day Five - Health & Safety and bureaucratic nonsense

....... is alive and well and visiting France it would seem. The much planned (since May) much anticipated and much needed telephone line was due to be installed today. Rich walked the dogs at the crack of dawn so that the agreed calling time (between 8-10) left no margin for error. I should have known it was too good to be true when at the very early time of 8.15 a smart little French van arrived and a suitably (for my taste) young and handsome Frenchman extended the hand of friendship and bade me “Bonjour”. Now to summarize, we have no line, no wiring , no installation of ANY kind EVER. I mean the people that lived in our house lived on one floor, the basement was their workroom, their grenier (loft)their animal feed store, the kitchen, lounge, bedroom and toilet all shared the same space - no walls, no dividers(even for the toilet, which had a modesty curtain fashioned around it)….it’s not like they were ever going to have a phone, or T.V…Electricity, I take it from the super duper re-wiring job my brother in law had to do, was an afterthought too. This rather too colourful picture had already been shared with our provider so there was no likelihood for a mistake…or so you would think. After ushering him through the door and explaining in my very best French where I wanted the telephone point and why, I saw him look quizzically around the room and he shook his head, not it would appear for the first time this transpired that he just thought he was connecting us….could he not therefore start the work of installation.?? The telephone pole is just 10 yds from our front door, how hard can it be??? More head shaking…more tutting, "I know it’s a 2ft thick solid stone wall, so just get a BIG drill and a cherry picker and bingo Monsigner Le Telecom". NON apparently, in France that’s the role of an electrician who can assess if you are going to hit internal wall cables, it’s not the telephone engineers job to install the site for the line !! Two minutes on the job and 69 euros worse off I still was no nearer to having my contact to the outside world. Luckily I have a very willing husband, the enormous drill borrowed from my brother in law, the step ladder of my neighbour and VOILA a freaking great hole and no electrician required….we weren’t going to hit power lines….my brother in law put them IN !!! Now after a very disgruntalled call to my service provider I have the engineer returning tomorrow…I am assuming that he will have the necessary box and bracket to run it into the house through our rather cleverly developed trunking…..I doubt it and I’m sure it’s going to cost me to have him tell me that, but I feel another strongly worded complaint brewing……it’s not like I didn’t tell them ……  

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