.by Anura Guruge
As I have explained before we are not ‘big’ phone people. Yes, I use a phone but it is not my favorite means of communications. I prefer e-mail. We don’t use the phone much. We also only use the phone, the old fashioned way, to make calls. So we need a basic cell plan — just voice and a basic phone.
I have been with U. S. Cellular for a long, long time. Maybe since about 2000, maybe even before. To be fair they treat me well. I have been out of contract for years. But, their rates keep on going up and their customer service is hard to reach of late.
Deanna’s aunt who works for Walmart told me about ‘Straight Talk‘. That would have worked but I had a horrible experience with a dead phone.
I have been an AARP member for a decade. It is a good deal. The membership pays for itself just in hotel discounts each year. When I remember I insist on my FREE donut at Dunkin. I think it is funny that Dunkin gives U.S. seniors free donuts. That is probably the last thing they need. I never eat mine. I give it to the kids.
I had seen ‘Consumer Cellular‘ advertised with the umpteen publications we get with AARP for years. But, I kind of thought that it might be even too basic for us. I was WRONG.
I saw yet another ad. on TV the other day. Decided to check them out. Prices and terms & conditions seemed right. No contract. Family plan for just $10 extra.
But, it didn’t say, inexcusably, whether you could transfer your existing cell number — a must for us. I have had this number for over a decade. All my accounts have it.
I called the 1-888 number to check. Yes, they support number transfer — the so called number portability.
They were beyond helpful. Very pleasant. Spoke good English. No real pressure. AARP members have an iron-clad 45-day zero-risk guarantee. I went ahead and pulled the trigger on that very first call. Ordered two Motorola phones and signed up for a family plan with 500 minutes to begin with. Yes, some catches. No free calls whatsoever, even at midnight. No free incoming calls. But, I can increase minutes on the fly.
The phones arrived within 3 days. They charged within 4 hours. Called to activate the service and have the numbers transferred.
WOW. WOW! WOW!
Talk about simple. They transferred both numbers within minutes. The final two-way confirmation within the hour.
Service is provided by AT&T. Yes, initially when placing order we had to use the ZIP for Concord because their system said that Alton was not within the service area. Didn’t bother me or them. We knew that AT&T worked in Alton.
So, that is the story.
So far, so good. Very impressed. No problems. Deanna set up voice mail etc. on both phones. I am happy.
2013 September Autumnal Equinox Will Be On Sunday, September 22, At 4:44 PM Eastern (U.S), 20:44 (8:44 PM) GMT
.by Anura Guruge
>> March 20, 2013 Spring Equinox — Mar. 20, 2013.
Equinoxes don’t do much for me. I am a committed ‘Winter Solstice‘ Sun worshipper. The Winter Solstice is MY favorite day of the year (and not just because it is so close to Christmas). As of that day the days starts getting longer and I love that. I mourn the ‘Summer Solstice‘ — when days start getting shorter!
The equinoxes to me mark the midway points between the solstices. Three more months to go.
Fall is not really with us as yet in central New Hampshire. I closely studied the foliage on my run up Prospect Mountain this morning. I took some pictures too but they have gone missing from the card! Strange. Never had that happen before. I was using my old camera and not Deanna’s magic Panasonic. Some foliage, not as much as I expected. The leaves that turned red in early August are now dead and withered.
The rain is coming. The Highland Games are in Loon — and we are not there! Though I have had some pangs, as I knew I would, it hasn’t bothered us much. Devanee and Deanna both acknowledged that it was ‘The Games’ weekend. That was all.
.by Anura Guruge
Deanna kind of had a hunch that I would not wait too long before I got another puppy. I did the same last time around when we tragically lost our dear Monty. I said I didn’t want to get another puppy but within 24 hours I was all over the Web desperately looking for another Golden puppy. That is how we got Maya. We checked out maybe 8 litters, in person, all around NH, in 2 days! It was the best thing I could have done. It was cathartic. Everybody stopped mopping around though Monty was never forgotten.
With Ulysses it was different. We knew it was coming. We had talked about ‘life after Ulysses’. The plan was always that we would get another dog. The only question was when.
A new puppy will be good. Deanna misses Ulysses and I still can’t get used to the house without my ‘Boy‘. I am so used to calling or talking to ‘the Boy‘ as I mostly referred to him. It was ‘The Boy‘ and ‘The Girl‘ — and they knew those terms too. So I needed a new Boy.
Yes, I violated most of my precepts BUT I am noted for being able to turn on a dime. I am very much a dyed in the wool Golden person. Maya was my 6th. I like Golden. They fit my personality. But, I do have a Golden, Maya — and she does go running with me.
Though I got my first Golden, a huge, hulking, very alpha example who was named ‘Shamrock‘ at the shelter, I am not known to be partial to rescue dogs. I like them as young as possible. We got Maya the day she turned 8 weeks. So, I am violating that rule too.
Wednesday and Thursday I was IDLY looking through PetFinder.com for Goldens and other BIG dogs. I was also seriously considering an Australian Shepherd. I check with Deanna but she wants me to pick the dog because she will have any of them or all of them. I also saw a white border collie. I have had a border collie before. I would have got that. Then I saw this litter of beagles. I called Deanna over. She was more than happy. So, I called. I was going to get a GIRL because that was the first one of the litter that I saw. See, I am flexible when it comes to dogs.
The lady, Janice, as nice as can be (and in love with my accent) asked me IF I wanted a BOY. Only one answer to that. She then pointed me to ‘Benny‘ — and then immediately told me that he was adopted!
I immediately liked Benny. To me there is only one Benny and that is ‘Benny Hill‘. A dog named after Benny Hill appealed to me though Deanna had already decided years ago that the next boy will be ‘Braxton’, though I no know Braxtons and have no idea if there were any famous Braxtons. But, it meets a naming requirement. We have been told that dogs are more receptive to names that have ‘Y’, ‘O’ and ‘X’ — hence Ulysses and Maya.
I dragged the story out of her. She had been taken BUT had not been paid for. The person was actually late. I pointed out that I will pay over the phone. She said she will contact the ‘pending’, give him a deadline, and then get back to me. The deadline was supposed to be this morning. I called. She said that he still hadn’t send her the funds via PayPal. Then to my chagrin she said she was going to give him till ‘tonight’. I wasn’t happy with that. She agreed that that was not fair since he was already more than 48 hours behind due. So she was going to give him till 4 pm today.
At 2:38 she had called and left a message (we were at an audition) that Benny was ours!
I had the funds to her within 15 minutes of getting home.
We are supposed to pick him up from Kittery, Maine next Saturday — at noon.
Suffice to say the kids are delighted. Deanna is happy. I will have a new puppy to call ‘Boy’ and play with.
Not sure how he will do on the running front. That could be an issue. My dogs have to run! That is our thing.
You know that you will be hearing more about Braxton and the pictures will flow.