Metamorphosis and My iPhone

20 Aug

Today was one of those bland days when it’s difficult to specify what you did probably because you didn’t do anything.

My sleeping schedule is now almost completely backwards. Maybe it’s my body’s way of saying it misses Texas so will now pretend to live there, in Central Standard Time.

I don’t think my semi-catatonic state has much to do with missing Texas actually. Not because there isn’t anything to miss; there is. I just think I’m going through a metamorphosis right now. Since I was never a caterpillar (thank gosh because that is the one living thing Carrie truly dislikes, besides the living things everyone dislikes such as that white dog downstairs), I don’t expect to come out of this resembling a butterfly. I have a feeling some major change is going to ensue, though. I’d tell you what it is when I know.

Now I will stop sounding vague and dreary and tell you about our vacation to Kenting, Taiwan. We leave tomorrow. We’ll stay at Awu Hostel, and if you don’t hear from us again in 5 days, come looking. Our trip is relatively harmless though; we plan to lay around on what we hear are fantastic beaches. I also plan to do some snorkeling. By the way, Thailand is supposed to be a true paradise to which Taiwan does not even compare. They don’t pay English teachers nearly as much, so it’s not the best place to live in that respect, but visiting Thailand is about $300 USD as I’ve said before, and the flight is very short. I will definitely be saving up to visit during one of my future vacations.

My iPhone has become a royal pain in my standard of living. As I probably mentioned, the thing doesn’t work here. Either Apple or AT&T, I’m going to assume the latter, decided that the phone should be “locked” so that if you take out the SIM card they provide, you cannot use the device. Meaning, that the only way to use the phone is to pay AT&T each month, something I can obviously not afford to do since I would be paying international roaming costs. So, I got the phone hacked, this is known as jailbreaking it in the criminal world. I paid about USD$10, not bad. It worked perfectly except that since it’s a smart phone it was eating through the prepaid SIM card minutes like the very hungry caterpillar on Saturday right before he went into his cocoon. It got to the point where I was not willing to put any more money on the SIM card, and could only receive phone calls and texts, not send them.

This past Tuesday, I went to a popular cell phone service company here called MyPhone and signed a TWO year contract. Yes, I had to commit to two years. Actually, since I’m not a citizen of Taiwan, they wouldn’t let me do it; smart little buggers know that we Americans will not honor a contract without them holding our credit score in their fat business fingers. To be fair, the Taiwanese’s  fingers are skinny. David had to sign the contract for me. He looked at me and said, “It’ll cost 4,000 dollars to cancel this contract once I sign”. I nodded, and he signed his Chinese name which I will not attempt to share with you since I can neither pronounce it correctly nor write Chinese characters.

As I anticipated, the new SIM card wouldn’t work in my phone because my phone is hacked. I had to go back to the shop that hacked it and have the guy cut the new SIM card to fit with the little computer chip that helps my phone forget its past life.

But, I have soon discovered that if I go in an elevator (this is my mode of transportation to and from my apartment) or if I go to another non-reception area like the ever common basements, my phone attempts communication with its past life, messing up the new SIM card. This means I have to perform the following on the phone in order to even receive phone calls:

Turn off the phone

Use a paperclip to open the SIM card tray.

Turn on the phone and wait for the screen saver to appear along with a “No SIM card” message

Push in the SIM card tray

Wait for a message to appear that the SIM card has been detected and click “Accept”

Wait for one signal bar to appear

Dial the number “112”, wait two seconds, and hang up. This is like 911 in Taiwan which makes me worried EMTs will appear at my door.

Go to the Settings and turn on the Airplane mode

Wait for a message to pop up and click “Ok”

Turn off the airplane mode

Click “Ok” to several messages

Turn on the Airplane Mode

Turn off the Airplane Mode immediately

Now the phone should work. Sheesh.

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