Flying Flamingos

Nothing much is going on on Quest. Well, except work. Half-term has ended and the last push of school has started before Easter. Easter is early this year, so it won’t be too bad, but these early mornings are being punctuated by a very variable internet signal. It’s up and down here like a yo-yo.

I usually sit and work on my blog while Lu does her early classes. Now if I go on my phone, which she uses to hot-spot to the computer, it plays havoc with the signal. No more phone for me. Hmm. Sad emoji.

Except I’ve woken up and none of our phones can get online. The message says we have a PDP authentication failure. I can’t even get online to see what that is. Typical.

My concern is always that our French Digicel SIM cards will somehow stop working. They shouldn’t – they are Pan-Caribbean and are supposed to work on many of the islands, but they are also like renegade SIMs. No other SIM card does this in the Caribbean.

And this SIM isn’t exactly a resounding success in Bonaire. We only get a 3G signal, piggybacking onto the local network provider. In Barbados we were given 4G. I was expecting the same in Bonaire, but alas, no. Our signal goes up and down. The girls’ connection to their classrooms is lost at least a few times a day. Sometimes it’s lost a dozen times.

They have become patient with re-connecting, but to be honest, I won’t miss this part of Bonaire when we go. It is still better than buying a local data SIM though. You can get good deals, but only if you’re a resident to the island. Otherwise it’s painfully expensive. This is common to many of the islands, so buying the French Digicel SIM card – 100gbs for 65 Euros – was an amazing way of overcoming cost and hassle. Hence my nervousness. I secretly expect it to crap itself.

I went and borrowed Jack’s phone to check his signal. He has the same message. He woke up through my rummaging.

‘Must be down on the whole island,’ he said.

I gulped. This would be logical. Though I did get an email from Digicel a few days ago, but it was in French so I didn’t pay too much attention to it. Uh-oh. I did enough to see that it was just a top-up deal – at least I thought so. I can’t Google translate that either.

Maybe Jack is right, and the whole island is down. That’s happened before. The main road was being dug up last year and they hit the main cable. Or perhaps they’re doing essential works. ‘They’re up the poles and down the holes,’ which was my Grandad Harry’s favourite saying.

School has to be paused until our signal comes back. Or we end up buying an expensive, local data SIM. Cross your fingers. And in the meantime, I’ve written my blog. Nothing much goes on on Quest.

PS – we got the signal back. Phew. And we saw flying flamingos.

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