Unfortunately this is not about a car. Hopefully that blog will come soon. This blog is about the misadventures of Chris and Emily so far this week.
It all began earlier in the week when we found that for some reason, the money we had transferred from our American bank account, did not get to our French bank account. One would think this is a simple process, but au contraire mon ami! Even though you are not trying to take money out of the French bank account, but actually trying to put money into it, if there is even a period wrong on whatever form you use, the French bank will not accept your money and will send it back to America. This is not tres convienient. Basically you have to start over from the beginning and hope it works the next time.
Our next hiccup occurred on Thursday morning when the lock on our door decided it was retiring. With us on the outside. “Did you forget your keys and lock yourself out somehow?” you ask. No, we both had our keys, but neither one would work because the lock itself broke inside the mechanism in the door. We had also made the mistake of not leaving any windows open or our deck door unlocked, so we had no way to get inside. Not that it would have mattered since the door would not open from the inside either.
We had to call a locksmith. Well, actually, first we had to figure out what the word for “locksmith” was in french. Seurrier, obviously. The first guy we called spoke less english than I do french, but we did work out that he was retired and therefore not able to help. All of this led to us eventually meeting our downstairs neighbor, Madame Dupont, who is British but speaks fluent french. Madame Dupont called around for us and left messages at several locksmith phone numbers, but we had no luck with anyone calling us back. In the process we found out that Madame Dupont is also a trail runner and has done some of the same races as Emily and I.
Madame Dupont let us borrow tools to try and get the door open and kept us fed and watered during the four hours it took to get our door open. Eventually a locksmith who spoke english called us back and showed up to fix our door. He was very nice and we kinda liked the guy! (For those not in the Baker family, that last sentence was an inside joke). He ended up having to replace the entire lock and give us new keys.
Our misadventures continued the next day when Emily’s phone stopped working. She somehow managed to get onto the Orange (the French version of ATT, Verizon, etc.) website, and we began a french chat with a helpful service person. This person found our file and said he could not help us but would forward the file on to the appropriate department. Soon after that, rather than fix whatever problem there was, Orange decided to suspend Emily’s account entirely. She could then not even access her account on the Orange website as it refused to accept her email and login information. Somehow Emily’s account ended up in the fraud department. We have no idea what happened or how it happened.
After spending many hours on the phone yesterday, we waited eagerly to hear from the fraud department today. A man from the fraud department called this morning as we were on the bus headed home from grocery shopping. As you might have guessed from the reading the rest of this blog, the man did not speak english. Fortunately, he did speak enough english to let us know that he was sending an email that would help us get Emily’s account un-suspended. All she had to do was send to Orange via email, all the paperwork we had already sent them including, passport, electricity bill, bank info, height, weight, hair color, favorite candy, mother’s shoe size and father’s favorite word (pulchritude, for those not in the know). Sure enough, a few minutes after sending in all the details of her entire life, Emily’s phone began to work again! Relief flooded throughout our condo. We are hoping to not have any more of these type of adventures any time soon.
On an entirely different topic, I did take an interesting picture the other day. Please feel free to let me know your thoughts on the interpretation of the picture below.
Now go out and be consistent!