how landslides and undersea cables affected our day

Today I woke up only to find that my multiple devices were indicating that my wifi was connected, but something was not right. When I tried streaming radio or checking email or reading the school’s beloved “daily bulletin,” I kept hitting big boring messages from my browser that the server could not be found.

Slice of Life

Slice of Life

I had recently settled a pricing issue with the local internet service provider. My bill had doubled without warning. When I found out that my initial cost was a promotion and that the real bill was more than double, I balked. I had my pembantu (Indonesian helpers who assist bules or foreigners) speak to someone at the company–CepatNet (cepat means “hurry” or “fast”–ironically named) and discovered I had the option to be on a more reasonable plan. Only the speed would be slower. I would test it out. Because really, how much slower could internet get, if the “fastest” was what I had been experiencing while paying full price?

Things were working out–in fact, I hadn’t noticed a big difference in service. Until . . . last week when my online banking site mysteriously would not load. My banker back home wrote to say the site was working in the US. I began to panic. I need to manage my finances. Internet is a lifeline to your money, your family, your friends, your profession . . . Having it slowly pinched off is disconcerting.

Finally, today, when I couldn’t check my overnight Slice of Life postings–that was it. I would pay more for my service. I let my pembantu know as soon as I came down to breakfast. Would she call and ask when I could reconnect to my faster service? She was happy to do this. She just needed my last bill which I was only too glad to hand over.

At school today, we received the following email (an excerpt) from our IT director–which explains so much and may even save me from being, once again, gouged on my internet service since Indonesia does not truly have the infrastructure to offer “fast / cepat” internet service:

Here’s a summary of the internet problem we’ve been dealing with today.

  1. An undersea internet cable out of Indonesia was cut on 19 January.  All internet traffic was re-routed, so we’ve seen some performance issues but overall things have been ok.
  2. This morning at 2:10 AM, one of the other lines out of Indonesia was cut in a landslide.
  3. This morning at 2:47 AM, one of the other undersea cables out of Indonesia was cut.

NOTE: This post took me really really long to post. If you are reading this, you now are aware of the lengths it went through to be viewed on your tech device. Around a landslide and under the sea!


About jaclynfre

Tech integration specialist, recipe adventurer, fast walker, sporadic writer, aunt, sister and daughter
This entry was posted in culture shock, international teaching, life and culture and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to how landslides and undersea cables affected our day

  1. Bruce Frens says:

    Sounds like Korea in 1970.

  2. Betsy says:

    Oh my, what do we do in situations like these nowadays? The thought of not having access to so many very necessary means of communication is frightening!

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