What a pleasant surprise

Much to my surprise, I found my DSL had been turned on yesterday — a week before it was scheduled for activation.  I was quite surprised that SBC had seen fit to grace me with an early service date given that they had screwed up the schedule and couldn’t find a way to override the dates in their system.  I think it goes without saying that I’m happy to have DSL again.  Dial-up internet access sucks no matter how you cut it.  For someone like me who sends and receives tons of e-mails on a daily basis and does quite a bit on the web, dial-up significantly cramps my style.

Can you people not get anything right?

As some of you may remember, I suffered an interruption in my internet service when I moved early last year.  The interruption was due to the service provider.

Well, once again I'm without DSL.  Once again it's due to the service provider.  Their idea of "infinite service" is laughable at best.  Yes, I'm talking about SBC.

I originally scheduled the transfer of my DSL and phone service for October 1 based on a move date of October 2.  When I decided to move this past weekend, I called and had the transfers moved up as well.  This is apparently something SBC has little experience with — or little interest in getting right.

Since the original DSL transfer date was set at October 5, it was never changed when I switched the dates to September 17.  I discovered this problem Sunday when I was setting up my computer, so I called SBC to find out when the DSL would be turned on.  That's when they told me it would be another two weeks because the original transfer date had already been processed and it was impossible to change.

It only takes 7-10 days at most to move DSL, so I was a wee bit upset about this.  Sadly the only change they could make to the date was to push it out even further.  That's not acceptable and no one at SBC has any idea of how to change the date to an earlier one, so I'm once again without DSL for a while.  Until the DSL is up and running, my home internet connection is dial-up.  How archaic is that?  This means site updates may not be as forthcoming as I had hoped, but I'll try my best not to leave you hanging for too long.

As for SBC, they suck.  The excuses for this are just that — excuses.  It's pitiful that a technology company is at the mercy of their own technology, unable to change dates in the system once they've been processed.  I think the "infinite service" advertising campaign they're running should be considered false advertisement since I have had three separate experiences with them on this and, in each of those cases, I have found the service lacking to an infinite degree.

The move is complete

My move this weekend was basically uneventful.  Although it was hot and humid, I got moved with little trouble.  Moving is never an easy thing and is always more disruptive than we hope, but I think this one went well.  The Kids are growing increasingly accustomed to the new place (as am I).  I'm tired and sore, but who isn't after moving (when they do the work themselves)?  There's still more organizing to do at the new place and some stuff that needs to be taken care of at the old place, so I'll be working through all of that over the next week or so.

Many thanks to my friends (xocobra and Jenny) for their assistance.  I couldn't have done it without you.

I will say that I'm happy to be out of that place.  As I explained earlier, there were just too many ghosts in the old place.  I'm glad to be moving on with my life now despite the disruption.

Call it a a blackout period

There will be no site updates for the next few days (not even Random Thought updates) since I'm moving.  I'm hoping to be back online by Sunday, only missing Saturday, but it could be as late as Monday — depending on how the move goes, of course.

There are too many ghosts here

Even before Derek passed away last week I had decided that I needed to move.  It was as much a financial decision as an emotional one.  After Derek moved back to his hometown, it was painfully clear that I didn't need a three bedroom, two bath apartment.  On top of not needing all the space and not wanting to pay for a place this big, the apartment his haunted by memories — ghosts of a life now behind me.

Derek was sick long before we moved here in April of 2003.  In fact, the move was doubly difficult because I had to do all of the work.  I'm not complaing, mind you, as Derek was ill and not able to do more than drive between the two apartments.  After his car accident a few days after we moved, Derek's condition went downhill rapidly until he was hospitalized later in the year.

So this apartment is full of those memories — the ghosts of our last move together, forever marking a turning point in the time we had left; the thoughts of his failing health and the then present knowledge of where it would lead him; the idea that we both liked this place when we chose it, yet I was the only one who really used it because Derek spent most of the time in the hospital; and the clear and indisputable truth that I knew, even back then, that, when our lease ended here, Derek would probably be gone.

I can barely sleep now, haunted nightly by the life we had together before we moved here.  Every time I walk into this place I am reminded of what has been lost.  It's increasingly difficult not to cry when I'm here as I look around me and am assaulted by constant reminders of Derek.  There's the bedroom where his hospital bed is, the place where he spent most of the time when he was here.  There's his office, the room that he only used for a few weeks before being hospitalized and, after that, unable to get his wheelchair into the room because of his desk and other furniture, it remained unused.  There's the bathroom that Jenny and I spent an entire day cleaning after Derek was hospitalized because his body had literally begun to fall apart in there.  There's the kitchen that Derek loved so much despite the fact that he couldn't cook.  There's the patio he adored because of the view but couldn't use when he was home from the hospital briefly because his wheelchair couldn't get out the door and around the corner.  There's the living room where we would sit for hours watching favorite movies, television programs, chatting with each other about work and life, playing with The Kids, reading (each our own thing, of course), eating, and generally spending time together.  There's the long walk from the parking garage — the walk that he could barely make when we moved in and couldn't make shortly thereafter.  And the list goes on…

I am besieged at every moment that I am here, besieged by memories of what was, besieged by the ghosts of a life now behind me, inundated by the images of someone taken too early from this world.

I cannot remain in this place.

So I went apartment hunting recently, looking only for something temporary until I get my feet back under me and my life back on track.  After spending two years caring for Derek and keeping him alive and dedicating my life to his well-being, it's difficult for me to know where to begin to get back to living, but moving out of here is the first step.

I found a place — a nice little one bedroom flat with an attached garage that is just around the corner from where we are (meaning I don't have to leave the neighborhood I love so much).  Because I'm focusing on getting rid of so much of the furnishings that we shared (only because I need desperately to put that behind me and to move on with my own life), I don't need much room right now.  The place is about 760 sqaure feet and will work just fine for the next six months.  It'll be a place where I can work on getting back on top of things, getting my life together again, refocusing my efforts on living rather than on caring for someone who is terminally ill.

I'm going to sign the lease on the new place on Wednesday.  Once that's done, I'm trying everything in my power to move by next weekend.  As of right now, that appears to be entirely doable.

I'm naturally worried about The Kids.  Cats like routine, normalcy, dependability.  Moving is always so hard on them (especially Kako due to her tendency to develop urinary tract infections).  I'll have to keep a close eye on them as cats don't respond well to stress.  I'll be spending extra time with them to assure them that I am not leaving.

You should expect me to be offline for at least a few days starting on Friday.  I hope to be back online by Sunday at the latest.

I step out into eternity…