On Thursday I took the afternoon off from work so I could meet the guy from DirecTV and our new Internet provider, Internet America. In case you hadn't seen the follow-up to my post about our crappy Internet service, based on some pretty solid recommendations from readers, I called Rock Solid Internet. They came out on Monday and I can only say, I was extremely pleased with their service, professionalism, and the fact that a manager actually came out to the job site to check on things.
Unfortunately, once they put up the mast, they could not get enough of a signal to pass the test. Between our house and the tower they were aiming for, there are simply too many trees. We do live in a forest after all. So, they pulled down the mast, siliconed the screw holes, packed up their stuff and left. No charge, no nothing. The guy did tell me that he was pretty sure Internet American would work since they use a different radio for their service.
On Thursday, the DirecTV guy got out here first. The issue is, the ManCave is a separate building from the house, so it wasn't just a matter of adding a box to a cable drop. You just don't know how much I obsessed over this whole thing because in my mind, I knew the answer was to bury a cable run. But, the experts on the Internet were telling me about all this signal loss, deterioration of the lines, etc., etc. I had, for a brief moment considered letting the guy run the wires under the eaves of the house, then jumping the 3 feet between structures like they did in the old days with phone lines. The installer looked at me and said, C'mon, man. You know you aren't going to be happy with that.
In the mean time, the Internet America guy showed up. Super nice guy who understood my dilemma - the fact that ever since more people in the neighborhood have moved in, the DSL service has just become slower and slower. He warned me ahead of time that if he couldn't get a good signal he'd still have to charge me a $25.00 service call fee (which I get, but RSI didn't charge me a dime), but at this point, I was willing to take the risk. I mentioned to him that our neighbors just up the street have IA and they are very pleased, so he got in his truck and drove up to look at their installation. I think that made him feel a little better about our chances of success.
For those of you doing the math, I will tell you that I think there is an overall better deal to be had with RSI. There was no installation fee and no commitment. That is, if you aren't happy, just turn the equipment back in and you are done. We do have a 2 year commitment with IA, there was a $149 installation fee and if they had needed the big 50 foot mast like RSI first tried, I would have had to pay for that on top of the installation fee. But, now that we are installed and have Internet, I'm happy to pay the price.
And I was happy to call the phone company, cancel my DSL and my phone service, since we have cell phones and the only calls we get are from telemarketers.
Anyway, for the most part, I think we can call this project done and start looking forward to the next big thing. Eva did a lot of yard work Friday afternoon and I even pulled out the mower to clean-up the front yard. It was starting to look a little scraggly out there. Perhaps we'll do some sod next. I'll let you know.