Saturday, May 1, 2010

Rants and Raves

I would have to give Verizon a failing grade as before I left I called their global phone unit and talked to them about using my Blackberry phone overseas. Everyone said my phone would work fine in Thailand and Nepal but that there wouldn’t be any coverage in Tibet. I also asked them to not shut off my phone but to only have basic service and voicemail. I was also supposed to be able to replace the sim card in my phone so that I could have cheaper rates to call from Nepal while I am there. Well, my phone didn’t work in Thailand or Nepal. I tried following the instructions for replacing the sim card and it didn’t work. I used several different sim cards to no avail. I had a lump of coal on my hands so I left it in Kathmandu. Then we enter into Tibet and I see this guy talking on his blackberry. I ask him who he uses and he said Verizon. He had a package for $70 and had unlimited data. He said the same thing that the phone didn’t work in Thailand or Nepal but that when he crossed the Tibet border his phone went crazy and started to download all his email and text messages. The picture you see on the blog was from his phone that he emailed to Sue. I then ran into a German guy who had a T-Mobile phone that worked as well. So right now I don’t have my phone and the message says that it is disconnected. Verizon, you are on my Sh-t list.
I haven’t shaved since I left California on March 26th. I now have a beard, yes I know it is hard to believe, that is brown, grey and my Irish red. I’m not caring for it too much but I don’t plan to shave till I get back so my brothers kids can shave my beard again!
Thuraya Sat phones. The damn phone weighs next to nothing, always give you a connection and cost only 70 cents per minute or less to call anywhere you want to in the world. If anyone plans to travel abroad do not get an Iridium phone. Get the Thuraya because the satellites are always stationary so you never drop a call and can get service in valleys like the one I am in.
Today I exchanged $260 for 18,200 Rupees. Somehow that just makes me feel like I am wealthier. 
We have upgraded Fanuru from Cook to Chef. He is so damn good. I am definitely fattening up before we get to ABC.
This computer is set up for Skype video so I am hoping it will work through the sat phone. We won’t know till we get to ABC. Now that would be cool.


  1. Bill, you CRACK ME UP! Stop fretting over the phone and climb the damn mountain already (just kidding). My fingers are crossed for you guys and I am checking the news constantly. May is summit month. Please continue to stay safe and make good decisions. Now I'm going to go. I need to switch my carrier from Verizon to T Mobile.

  2. Bill - Watched the Derby today in your stead so you could keep of streak going. Fun race but not nearly as interesting as reading your Blog. Hope you get 1 percent as much out of reading our notes to you as we get from reading your notes to us. Yes - Verizon sucks!

  3. Leslie SantilloMay 2, 2010 at 6:30 PM

    Hi Bill! It's your cuz Leslie...John and I just finished his book report--it's a travel brochure for Mt. Everest! We read the series "Everest" together and are following your blog, enjoying all the comparisons. Many prayers for your safety and success. Much love, The Santillo Clan...

  4. been reading your blog and i'm hooked. I have no idea who you are but I love reading it. I will not use verizon under any circumstances. thanks for the heads up.
    God bless you and keep you safe on E.

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