I just ordered an e-reader, which the manufacturer promises will still be visible in direct sunlight (and there will be a lot of direct sunlight in Africa!). Charley and I usually lug five paperbacks each on a trip. I did not get an IPad because it would duplicate what my new phone will do, and we needed an international calling device. Hope that wasn't a mistake!
I had to get rid of my beloved old Sony Ericsson pink cellphone. The back kept falling off and I had to hit each letter three times to find the right one. Typing a text message took forever.
So I got the simplest Iphone available. It is pretty ugly - black and industrial-looking. The cost was $49. Of course, tax is charged on the retail value, which was $424. Then I needed some kind of special ap (short for "application" - I'm learning) for $69, a charger for the car, a service agreement, and most importantly, an indestructible case and film over the glass (I don't want an elephant trampling on the thing, but maybe it would survive?). The only feminine choice for a cover was white, but that would get black, anyway. I walked out of there with a $245.41 bill.
Well, I didn't exactly JUST walk out of there. Lovely Ashley spent two and one-quarter hours with me. First she had to call Charley to get HIS permission to add my cellphone line under my own name, since his was on there as the primary account-holder. That was not pretty, as Charley not only won't touch computers, he won't touch cellphones and doesn't understand why any company needs six security questions answered to change an account. Finally Ashley turned him around.
Ashley should have sized me up when she saw me walk in the door with my pretty pink phone. Nevertheless, she persevered and answered my every question. Even downloaded all my photos and address book from the old phone and then gave me a demonstration by calling me. I was put to the test and passed (answered my own phone)! And then she wrote Pam's "To Do List." No kidding!
I felt like a kid in kindergarten, but at home I was eternally grateful. I had to download ITunes to set up an account. I had to create a password and username and then plug my white cord into the new device and download the info onto my computer (so I never lose any information). Then I had to mark in my calendar the date to remove the International Traveller plan in November, when we return from our trip. Oh yes, and I have to remember not to answer emails on my new phone overseas. That would cost me around $200 more. I'll find WiFi (I know what that means, too!) at the hotels.
Lastly, Ashley printed out the charges on my first and second phone bills that will be coming in, and showed me that the third bill would be the constant one.
Little did Ashley know I wasn't finished! When I got home, I emailed her with two more questions, since I couldn't view the tutorial that AT&T sent me about using the thing. She told me to email her anytime. And guess what - she answered my questions that day.
And the next day, when I had to email her again with another question.
So I guess I got my money's worth. I've already deleted all the worthless emails on my IPhone, but have to go out on my deck to do it. We don't get decent reception on the coast of Massachusetts!