Oct 01 2010

No internet, but still here

by at 1:18 am

We’ve done it–made our way from Renens to Lausanne.  The boxes are (sort of) unpacked, the new (second hand) oven is working, and the old apartment has been handed over to the new tenant.

We hired movers, who were fine, we hired a neighbor to do the cleaning on the landlord’s recommendation (great because she was half the price and did a great job and was nice and flexible), we rented a standard truck (go Seth’s new manual driving skills!) to haul over the rest of our stuff and go to the recycling center and pick up used stuff (a wardrobe, an oven/stove, and a fridge).  On Sunday we unpacked, and our food is currently organized in moving boxes on our shelves because we can’t figure out a better way to fit it.  And we’re making very heavy use of basement storage space which we technically share with another apartment whose tenants don’t seem to use it and hopefully won’t mind that we’ve taken it over.  Seth installed a light fixture because apartments in Switzerland come only with wiring, no bulbs, no glass casing, and for some reason only lower wattage CFLs seem to be working so there is not much light.  We put the wardrobe together, which was a challenge to do without directions and the fact that it has already undergone many dis-and-re-assemblings so is rather weakened at many of its ikea joints, but it’s fine now and fits most of our clothes.  Hopefully it won’t collapse.

The major challenge to overcome is getting internet in our apartment.  I am still at a loss for how to explain how television, phone, and internet work in this country, but Swisscom assured us last week that everything would go fine when we moved, our account would transfer, and our internet would magically work on Monday.  Not so.  Several billion phone calls to Swisscom later (thanks Seth!) and two visits from an electrician later, our internet?  Still not working.  I’m currently using a 3G usb stick.  And once it does start working, it will still be in my name and still require a landline, even though they now offer internet with a cell phone subscription and promised us they’d transfer it to Seth’s cell phone subscription plan without hassle. Argh, Swisscom.

Of course, all of this was AFTER I took care of the logistics of announcing our departure to Renens, announcing our arrival in Lausanne, and getting the papers necessary for a new residence permit and a new transport pass.  It has been an eventful two weeks.  But now that the hardest parts are over (I hope!), some musings and notes on moving:

  • We still haven’t done laundry (we’ve done a grand total of 2 loads since we’ve been back in the country, just underwear!).  The rules are more flexible here, as we don’t have an assigned day, just a sign up sheet.  But sign up times are still really long blocks of time when you’re expected to do all your laundry at once and get charged a lump sum, and it is thus still mainly during work hours.  We’re hoping to get a slot on Sunday (wow, Sunday slots!) so that I don’t have to do it all myself. So. much. laundry.
  • Seth’s commute is now about 20 min shorter, clocking in at just over an hour, total one way.  But  he also just found out how much he’s supposed to be working, and now he is planning to never take a lunch break because he doesn’t want to get home an hour later or get up an hour earlier.
  • It is pretty cool to be in Lausanne.  Everything is closer–just by a few minutes, actually, but it takes less planning.  And we can actually get places by walking, although hills are an issue.  There is a bakery, a famous chocolate shop, 3 dry cleaners, two small grocery stores, a bus stop, a metro stop, and a park within 5 minutes walking.
  • Since our kitchen and our living room are now one and there is no ventilation, our apartment is already really stinky.  The whole thing smells like our dinner.  Does this mean we will have to cook only bland food?
  • There was this thingy that had been left in our old apartment for us, and there was a new one in this apartment.  And then we went to the store to get some new supplies, like hangers and a foot stool, and saw a selection of them there.  I FINALLY figured out what it does after asking when I handed over our old apartment, since the directions on the boxes plus the internet failed to provide any insight.  It plugs the drain in the kitchen sink, but if the sink gets too full of water, it drains.  Why do all Swiss apartments come with that, but not light bulbs?  Or ovens, for that matter?

Just ritually checked the phone, for the 20th time today perhaps.  Whoa, dial tone!  That’s new!  Ok, time to go make my internet work…

Update, 10:30 pm: Still no DSL here, although our landline is now working, which is clearly very useful.  After fiddling with the router and such when he came home, Seth called Swisscom, again.  Swisscom reports that our internet will be turned on on Tuesday.  Tuesday?!  More than a week after they said it would?  I work at home; I need real internet!!!  Argh.

Update, Thursday: I called again this morning and they did some more careful checking to see what’s happening, and now believe it will be working by tonight. In the mail, we received a letter from Swisscom which (no joke) says that Swisscom has “many questions” about our telephone connection but has been unable to reach us (oh, really? you couldn’t call us on our Swisscom cell phones?) and would like us to call them.

Update, Thursday at 5pm: It works! Yay!

One response so far

One Response to “No internet, but still here”

  1. Alana Steinon 29 Sep 2010 at 11:58 pm

    It took Comcast a whole month to get our internet working in our new apartment, and we were in America! Hope they fix it for you soon.

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