It has been a quiet weekend. But not of my making. I took my last call at about 8.30 pm and sent my last emails about an hour later. A book called. I took it and went to bed.
And the following morning I went briskly to check the telephone which sat, lights blazing, nobody home. It was dead. So I went to the computer, which lit up and took the print but there was no Internet connection. Even people who have the latest and the best suffer this at sometime. I was slightly put out by both playing up at the time but those are the breaks.
I consulted a neighbour who thought the batteries in the telephone might be at fault. She gave me new ones but they were not rechargeable so
nothing happened. I got the right batteries – no difference. I went out to supper. The following day I borrowed a phone to call my internet provider: no answer, cut off after 16 rings. Nothing to do.
The hairdresser came on Monday and I borrowed her telephone to call Sean and say, “Help”. He asked what was the matter, I told him and he said he’d be there
in a couple of hours. When he arrived he said he didn’t know if he could fix it but he would try. I made him a cup of tea. He runs on tea.
He says he doesn’t know what he did but the lights (once dimmed) came on again in some essential part of the machinery and suddenly we had lift off. The telephone continued to sulk. Sean is a radio person. He has considerably more technical knowhow than I – no, wait. That is misleading. My friend’s new dog has considerably more technical know how than I.
Sean knows a great deal which he deprecates and he has long been around desks and screens and stuff. He knows and I don’t. He took the phone apart, cleaned it and said he thought something had leaked in it. We waited. He read, I sent emails. The phone remained unchanged. Sean looked up and said, “This is going nowhere. You need a new phone.”
Shortly afterwards he pulled up a new model slightly cheaper than the old one and a back up for a fiver and announced we were going to Argos in Victoria.
We left the house, directed to a station I knew of but had never used. He said he thought he remembered where the Argos was and he was right.
He had brought the serial number of the new phone and we looked up the number of the stand-by in the catalogue. I wrote the numbers down.
“Now” he said, “are you paying cash or card?” “Card ” I said. “Oh good” he said “then we can use the machine.” Which he directed and I complied.
When we went to the counter, where a young woman put the boxes down in front of us, I told her “I am no longer an Argos virgin.”
Grinning, she said, “I hope that wasn’t too painful.” “Painless” I said. “So you might be back?” I said I thought so, hoping not too soon.
When we left I asked Sean if I might please pay him, knowing how tight money is. He refused. I said “But I would have paid to be rescued.
Why can’t I pay you? ” “You can pay me in buns” he said (he has a sweet tooth). I protested but he was determined and then on the way home he stopped and pointed.
The line of his finger led to a boxed Panettone, an Italian speciality left over from Christmas. “Can we have that?”
I was already opening the shop door. “Is this a frightful cheek?” he asked. “No” I said. “It’s called having what you want. I am delighted.”
The proprietors were too. So home we came, he set up the phone, I heated the oven to warm the cake and made tea. And as we took our
first reflective bites, we agreed it was good and I said I had feared it might be dry. He had had the same thought but it wasn’t. So we sat, companionably
scoffing, till I wrapped up the last piece for his breakfast and he put the discarded unit into a separate bag to be disposed of in the electronics recycling facility near his home.
“How can I thank you?” I asked.
He shrugged gently. “What are friends for?”
…I am the sheep!