Square One

Here we are (again), back online (again) after another outage (again). My laptop decided to cook the less-than-two-months-old RAM module I had waited so long for. After a week or two of being back in a place where you barely have enough memory to run Firefox (memory pig!), MSN and edit a text document, I bit the bullet. Of course the problem was I'd just had RAM replaced; I didn't know how PNY would respond to having to replace it again so soon. And besides, two modules dying in 3 months? Unlikely. Maybe there was a problem with the motherboard.

I must admit that Asus have been pretty good about checking out and repairing my laptop, even after the warranty expired. They didn't charge me this time to look at the 2nd hand motherboard they installed for me a while back. However, this computer has had a lot of downtime, including the intermittent power system problem that plagued me (infuriatingly intermittently) for so long, even within the first year of owning the damn thing but only managed to get fixed (at my cost) after the warranty expired (hence the 2nd hand motherboard).

This time, the thing was there for nearly a week while they carried out their inspections. Finally I got a text that it was ready.

Of course, the tests turned up nothing, the computer worked fine without the RAM installed, fine with other RAM, but not with mine. Tell me something I didn't know. What I wanted to know was if there was some fault that was causing the RAM to die. No dice.


Prior to picking up my computer, I finally took my old video camera to the Canon Taiwan Service center. The camera has had a broken record button since the end of Chinese New Year. All it requires is a new switch.

The guy looked at it and then took it to the repair engineers to examine. When he came back out, he told me because this is a model they didn't stock (I bought it in Japan about 5 years ago for god's sake) there would be a fee of some kind of NT1800. At this point I was expecting him to tell me that the switch would cost a few hundred NT and I would ok, that's expensive but if it gets me my camera back then fine.

Then he said it would cost a further NT2200 to replace the button. Four thousand NT to fix a button, I repeated. That wasn't really worth it, told him. I could buy a new one with a little more than that.

So I stuffed the camera back in my bag and lugged it home.

Later, I took my RAM module back to get replaced. Still waiting on that one.

Today, I took my bike to Banqiao to get the overdue bi-annual inspection done. I'd paid the fine a couple of weeks prior in Taipei. I didn't realise it but they actually had a photo of my bike in there computer, presumably taken when the registration details were "modified" by the previous owner. The bastard there spotted that I had swapped the handle bars and added a sissy bar. This would not do, and neither would the fact that I had a fine owed. But I paid that, and I have a receipt here to prove it. "No no, you need to change all this stuff back, and go to Taipei and ask why they didn't cancel that fine".

So I now figured I could rush home and change the bars and try to make it back out... but that would be no good without going to Taipei and getting the fine sorted out. So speed over to Taipei... and a conversation with the lady there tells me that the record won't be changed until I've had the inspection done. And these incompetents idiots tell me that I need to change my bars over.

So after all that, I wasted my Thursday afternoon running and around, and I'm back at Square One. The only difference is now I at least have my (crippled) computer back. Now to play the waiting game - either way I'm fucked. If I do get my RAM replaced again, then I have to wait and see if it's going to cook itself again, and if they tell me know, then I have to buy a new computer. Well maybe it's not all bad (except I can't afford it).


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