Friday, December 6, 2013

I lost my blog!

This morning I wake up and happily prepare to visit Xi'an. The family must leave at 7:30 and I've spent lots of time with Janela on the phone so I am not very motivated to get out of my bed. When I do, a nightmare awaits me in my mailbox.

Problème matériel
Notre système a détecté une erreur sur le disque dur lié à votre instance.
---  Action :
Description : L'instance a été arrêtée.
 
Hardware error
Our system has detected an error on your instance' hard disk
The instance has been shut down
It means that they have not only shut down my website but they have crashed the whole computer. Fucking amateurs.
I am struggeling for my own survival in the middle of cold and unhospitalable china and these losers with a logo crash my website. There were a few worse timings during this trip from which they could choose from but their timing is probably still in the top five.
I can't handle them through the internet because the family has to leave quickly so I have to find another internet spot in the city. Xi'an is one of the historic centers of china, I am in there, hosted for two days with all the free time that I can have to visit it and I will spend it looking for the internet. This is ironic.
I manage to find a shopping center with free wifi and I connect. Thank god for my tablet, it is always there when I need it. Actually, it has gone through hell during six months and it still works better than the OVH servers who are sitting in a quiet comfortable room.

It's 2PM here, saturday, that makes 5AM in france. But the OVH company has an emergency hotline. We are available 24/7, we diagnose your problems in 15 minutes, they write. I am surprised, I would not have expected that of the french. I call from China, no matter how much it costs. There is too much at stake, I have no idea what is the problem, wheather it is a minor glitch or a huge error and all my data is lost.
Someone answers.
"Hello, I have recieved an alarming email and my website went offline. Can you tell me what is wrong with my server (I give the reference of the server)?"
"I don't have that information, can you describe what is wrong with your server?"
"That is my question to you!"
"I do not have that information"
"Can you get that information?"
"We can dispatch a technitian to diagnose the problem"
"Can you do it now?"
"No sir, sorry I cannot"
"Why not?"
"Because there is nobody here"
I am back in france and I am back in hell. These people have an emergency hotline which works 24/7 and tells their customers that there is nothing they can do. However they deliver this information very fast, way quicker than the advertised 15 minutes.
"When will someone be here."
"On monday"
"That's in two days."
It is specified on their website that they work on Saturdays but appearently, by work, they mean keeping up their useless hotline who tells everyone that nobody is here.
The guy writes a task into their maintainance system:

There is a problem with restarting the server.

I could do that myself on the service support page of OVH's website. I didn't have to call an expensive hotline just for that. But appearently there is nothing they can do.

I try to put my mind to other things but it is very hard, this blogs documents six months of one of the key periods of my life, I spend a lot of time writing it.
I go towards the city walls. The old city is just a small portion of what Xi'an has become.
"Most of Xi'an is big buildings now," my host had said, "we forget about the history value." Big buildings, like in every chinese city.
Big buildings in Xian
Drum or bell tower

However, the big buildings are also nice. They look impressive under the orange night sky reflecting the light pollution. I doesn't have the modern beauty of Langzhou but it is still very nice. I make my way to the museum. It is free and everybody tells me that I must see it at all costs. It is nice allright but maybe I couldn't appreciate everything due to the worries in my head.

Janela calls me a few times. She is my support for the day, I realize how difficult the trip would be without her. Even though I am travelling alone now, it is a big psychological plus to have someone supporting you, waiting for you, to have a girlfriend.

I get back and the good family make me dinner. The wife's sister is coming this time so I can't sleep in the son's room but I can build a tent in the living room which I do. Everyone thinks it's a good idea, thinks it's funny and is eager to help and do something out of the ordinary. I feel that I represent more than just a tourist, I am the flagbearer of an idea that everything is possible. It is a noble thought to bear.

Then they decide it is time for me to learn chinese and here I am with a children's book in my hand trying to decipher chinese characters with the help of my new teacher, a 10 year old boy.
The next day, after breakfast I go. Everybody wishes me good luck. And for the blog, I really need it. Actually, I will be going North again, towards Beijing.

Common scene in china

calligraphy in the streets