So if you recall this post, in which I discussed jobs, and science, and facing up to what you fear, you may remember that I promised to use this as a space to be genuine – Where “genuine” means to write about all the parts of life, not just the awesome/hilarious/delicious/fantastic bits.
So let’s talk about yesterday. Yesterday, my iPhone stopped charging. I did the normal internet research things, restart, reset, etc. etc – no dice. Dealing with Apple products here can be a bit tricky, especially since there’s no Apple Store/Genius Bar to saunter up to when something is going wonky. After considerable research and consultation, I found myself on the phone with a representative from StarHub, our mobile phone carrier. I must emphasize that he was very polite, and what happened after our conversation was, in no way, his fault
[Background: The standard iPhone charging cable has one iPhone-specific side, and one USB side.]
StarHub Guy: Well, is the problem with the phone or the charger?
Me: I’m quite sure it’s the phone. I’ve tried different outlets and different USB charge adapters. I tried plugging it into my computer. None of these worked.
SHG: But what about the charging cable that plugs into the phone?
Me: Well, when I plug the phone in, it “squawks” like it’s connected. It connects to my computer, so I’m pretty sure the cable is OK, but the phone just won’t charge.
SGH: You should still try switching that cord out.
Me: I can’t. I only have one.
SHG: Well, can’t you borrow one from a friend or co-worker?
Moments later, we ended our conversation, and I burst into tears.
For just a minute (OK, maybe five minutes), it didn’t matter that I have awesome friends & family around the world, that I can stay in touch with via all sorts of technology (although not my iPhone, at that moment). It didn’t matter that lots of KMN’s friends have adopted me into their circle with open arms and hearts. It didn’t matter that I had some budding running friendships. It didn’t matter that I actually enjoy the work I do (from home) these days.
At that very moment, I could hear that last question reverberating in my head. I was hyper-focused on his question, and on what my answer would have to be. That answer was NO. No, I actually don’t have any friends or co-workers whose iPhone charger I can borrow on a moment’s notice.
Have you ever noticed that crying is very hot work? In about 2 minutes, I looked like I’d just come back from a run. Lovely. So I closed myself in the bedroom, turned on the air conditioning, and read Patricia Cornwell for awhile. Somewhere in there, I pulled myself together, remembered all those other things I do have, and schemed a plan for dealing with the phone. Ultimately, the story has a very happy ending – it took most of the day, but StarHub was extremely helpful and I have a brand new iPhone that cost me just $9 (the price of a new screen protector). WIN.
So, to all of those who ask me if I’m lonely out here, the answer is…a little complicated. Because really, I’m not. Not a day goes by that I don’t get a text or email or FB message from a friend in the US – I’m blessed to have so many people looking out for me. My days are full, I have work to do, and we enjoy plenty of social engagements here. I’m generally comfortable with where I am – I know that developing my own friendships and social networks on the ground here will take time, and I’m pretty much OK with that. But every once in awhile, something catches me off-guard, hits me a certain way, and for a few minutes, I feel incredibly, acutely homesick.
[Don’t get me started on the Jason Mraz song 93 Million Miles.]
So if you are settling into a new place yourself (or even if you’re not, actually) and feel this way sometimes – take heart. You might feel alone, but remember that others feel this way too. So if we feel this way together, at least we won’t *really* be alone, right? 🙂
And if you ever need a iPhone charger to test your phone? I’m your girl.
We shall not be turning this into a pity party, so —
Tell me about your most hilarious experience on the phone with customer service!