I got it! My hard drive for my computer arrived! I'm so very excited. I'm not quite up and running yet but it's very close. I was able to install the hard drive all by myself (it was really ridiculously easy) but I'm still missing some of the software I need. My daughter and I will get that taken care of in the next week or so and then I'll be humming right along.
When I was in the midst of this computer mess I promised all of you a recap of everything once it was all resolved. Well, here it is--the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Back at the end of June my trusty computer crashed several times in a row and the message that came up said something about (I think) a problem with the RAM. I found a young man who has great computer skills but it seems they are more along the lines of software than hardware. He had it for a week without being able to do anything with it. I then had a friend's son take a look at it and he determined it was, indeed, the RAM. He took the bad one to a computer store in Ibarra (the closest "big" city with a pretty good computer store) and they said they didn't carry anything that old.
After much going back and forth in my mind and with people about the best solution to the problem I decided to buy a new laptop. A friend in the States helped me with that and it got shipped from the manufacturer to my reshipper in Florida who in turn sent it down here to me.
I got an email from the post office in Quito telling me they needed my passport. I took it to the post office here (along with a color copy) and gave it them. The woman there assured me that was perfect. It wasn't. I got another email from them asking for my passport. Back to the post office--she called Quito and they said I needed to send them a digital copy of my passport. OK, I could do that, and I did. The next day I got a lovely email telling me they received it and now they would send my computer to customs in "about 3 days."
As promised, about three days later I got an email saying I would need to take $81.xx to the post office here in Cotacachi--in cash--when my package arrived to take care of the import duty. OK, I could do that. I called the poor woman at the post office every day to see if it had arrived. Finally it was there. I went practically that very minute to get it.
It was perfect! I was in love. I got all my programs installed and was busily working on it for about two days when it got very, very slow, and then stopped. OH NO! I contacted the manufacturer and they were quite lovely about helping me diagnose the problem--bad hard drive. Great! They said they'd have someone come out tomorrow to fix it. Uh, that wasn't going to work. I had them send it to my daughter and I sent the bad hard drive with a friend who was going to the States so she could mail it to my daughter who would in turn send that one back to the manufacturer.
So far so good. My daughter got the hard drive and then her life got a little crazy but she got it and a few other electronic-y things sent to me and the wait began. After three weeks I contacted the post office--nope, it wasn't there. Four weeks, five, six, seven, it might even have been eight weeks and still no box. Oh dear, had it been stolen? I've heard this still happens, though it happens a lot less than it used to.
Then my daughter had a thought--what if it never left the States? She had it traced from there and it turns out it ended up in the equivalent of the dead letter office for overseas packages. Good grief! She got it back from them, I found a friend who was going to be in the States in the relatively near future who said she would bring it back for me. Actually, as I think about it, she said she would bring yarn back for me and my daughter misunderstood and put the computer pieces and parts in there as well but that just meant there wasn't quite as much yarn and I surely needed the computer pieces and parts more than the yarn!
Finally, this past Sunday, I met my friend (who lives in Quito, a two-hour drive from here) in Ibarra and got the box! This is very exciting and now I'm almost totally back in business. As soon as the holidays are over I fully intend to get back to having at least five posts a week and aiming for one a day. Having a computer once again that doesn't crash every time I turn around and doesn't lock up when I'm halfway through writing a blog post will be a true joy.
As I was writing this and thinking about how long the whole process took, it seems I've missed some part of the ordeal but it really doesn't matter. What matters is that I now have it and all is well once more.