Posts Tagged ‘delay’

Helpline maze

January 25, 2013 Leave a comment
Indicative of the branches in the TIM helpline

Indicative of the branches in the TIM helpline

This morning Clive pointed out in alarm a message from TIM, our internet service provider, saying that his 5Gb of upload and download per month were almost used up.

Once used up, the speed would slow to a crawl (not even worth trying to access the internet).

He checked on TIM’s own page and it said he’d used 4Gb, while their statistics said he’d used 2.7.

I picked up the mobile phone and settled down for a long session.

The options on the free helpline branch and branch again. The voice which conveys the recorded messages is gratingly familiar and enthusiastic. The content is almost entirely promotional.

The option for help from an operator is the very last one in each round. Unlucky you if you actually expect it to be there at the end of the maze. By the time you’ve exhausted all avenues, it has disappeared.

You have to know that the only way to reach an operator is to pretend that your phone has been lost or stolen. Now that could be dangerous! Do that in other countries or other situations and your number is instantly cut off and can’t be reconnected without protracted delays.

To add insult to injury, TIM now asks you to tap in the number of the phone or SIM card that has been lost. It was only after an otherwise unhelpful call to the shop which sold us our internet keys that I had the courage to tap in the number of Clive’s key.

And then I was too slow finding the asterisk with which I had to begin and had to hear the whole thing round again!!

When I finally got an operator, she confirmed that Clive has 1Gb left of his 5Gb, which is plenty to see him through to the renewal date of the 27th. (What happened to the 2.7 figure, though, and why are they sending out false alarms by text?)

She also confirmed that the only way to speak to an operator is to go through the farce of typing in a ‘lost’ number.

I sometimes think that it’s almost a full-time job just LIVING here.

The stove continued

November 9, 2011 Leave a comment

Today, a fortnight after our ‘never-before’ problem with the stove, I had a call from the local technician. He called himself  ‘the stove technician’ so I had some trouble working out who he was.

It turned out that he had had an email from the manufacturers of the stove who somehow knew we had a problem.

Our trusted technician had had a bereavement, I found out, but his co-worker promised to call us back and never did. I guess he was the one who told the manufacturers.

The error alert on the stove control panel

In any case, assistance (if it can be called that) took a long and circuitous route. Each party undoubtedly introduced its own delay.

My point here is that if you lie down and do nothing in Italy, no-one responds in any reasonable length of time. As far as any of this lot were concerned, we were a fortnight without heating.

I in fact got our regular plumber/electrician to have a look at the stove and he got it going again without any new parts that same evening.

Which was good, though almost certainly not the end of the story.

This evening one of the ‘common’ but nonetheless unnerving faults occurred again: AL HOT PEL (the ‘hot’ and the ‘pel’ flashing alternately). It means: ALARM – over-heated something. For ‘something’ read flue, burner, water, pellets etc as appropriate.

I have to unscrew a button and re-arm a sensor. There can be a delay of several hours before the sensor is ready to re-arm, but fortunately this time it didn’t take long.