Tonsils, Dancing and Computer Troubles

Now there is a blog title you don’t see everyday, but that has been our last week or so.

Finally, on September 9th Alex went in and had her tonsils removed. She did a great job, was very brave, and is recovering very well. She was into the hospital for 7:30 in the morning, into surgery around 9:30, and out right around 10:00. The night was a little hectic as she got sick a couple of times, and there was a chance that she might have to stay more than the typical one night in hospital. But she didn’t want to spend another night in there, so she made a deal that if she ate two things and kept them down she could come home. Alex kept down the food and was able to come home before lunch time on the 10th. She is now in her two week recovery period, where she had to remain home from school. She’s pretty happy that she gets to eat all the ice cream she wants, but at the same time sad that her two weeks off didn’t get her out of homework. The whole experience, even though it was hectic working around many peoples busy schedules, was pretty positive. All the Doctors, Nurses, and other staff at the hospital were very good. However, it still is very strange to me that Annapolis Valley Health will not do a surgery, that is typically done on children, during the summer when they wouldn’t miss school.

Last night we headed into Berwick to pick up a pair of dancing shoes for Miss Caile Beth. She was very excited getting to go in and pick them out and see the dance studio she would be dancing in. She certainly proved she is her Mothers daughter, as the first thing she did when she walked onto the dance floor was go look at herself in the mirror and play with her hair. This morning she woke up, and after getting ready in her cute little dance outfit, went to her first dance lesson. Parents aren’t really allowed to stay during the lesson but Jen peeked in right at the beginning and there was Caile, right in with the other kids holding hands and doing exactly what she was instructed to do. After the lesson is over the parents are able to come back and watch a little show that demonstrates some of what the kids learned during the day. Caile performed very well to a little jack-in-the-box song.

Now onto the computer troubles. It is not very often that you get to hear about good service so I thought it would be nice to share a very positive experience. The night I was at the hospital with Alex I had tried watching a movie on my laptop while she was having a nap. A short way into the movie the laptop froze and I had to manually power it off. When it came back up, before it even tried to boot into Windows, all that was seen were funky colored vertical lines going across the screen. Not very impressed especially seeing as I had not done a back up in a while. But eventually it came back, so I was quite sure it had something to do with overheating. Later that night, once I was home, I was working away and it froze up again. Same symptoms except this time it told me it could not detect my hard drive. An instant wave of stress poured over me and I even felt a little sick to my stomach. One of the suggestions that came on screen when it said it couldn’t find the hard drive was to pull it out and put it back in. I tried this, and luckily enough it worked. I was still quite sure it was a heat problem, but just to be sure before I went to bed I setup a virus and spyware scan.

When I checked in the morning it was frozen again and would only boot to my now dreaded vertical lines. Fed up, and sure it was not a software problem, I called Dell. They answered right away and the gentleman I talked to was very kind and helpful. Over the phone he had me do a few diagnostic checks and determined in his mind that it was the motherboard. He setup a dispatch to have someone come out to my home and fix it. Wanting a little more insight I went into to talk to my friends in the hardware support office at Acadia. I was told there that Dell had recently sent out a memo about the video cards in some laptops overheating so much that they were melting the solider joints. This made sense to me as I had been watching movies and other video intensive things when the computer froze. I did a little research on the issue and as it turns out it was due to some faulty chips that NVIDIA (The video chipset manufacturer) had put out even though there is speculation that they knew about the faults. So this affected more than just my Dell laptop. So far both Dell and HP for sure have issued statements about the problem.

The next morning I was very pleasantly surprised to receive a phone call before school saying that a Dell contractor would be out to that morning to fix my laptop. Now that is service. The very next day I had a new motherboard installed in my laptop and it has been working great ever since. Many people say horrible things about Dell’s support and computers in general, but I must say that I have been nothing but happy with both their computers, and now their support. Now I’ll admit that this was my only encounter with Dell’s support, but that in itself is saying something, because I have owned Dell’s for a number of years now. Started out with a Dell desktop computer which I bought sometime in 2003, and it is still going strong as a computer for the kids. My first two years at Acadia I have used a Dell laptop which I had no major problems with at all. Now my newest laptop is all fixed and once again working good. So the one time I had a problem that I had to deal with their support, they resolved the issue quickly and effectively. Thanks Dell!


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