HughesNet: Slayer of Dreams, Cause of My Caffeine Addiction
Mar 2, 2009
As a freelance writer, I always daydreamed about moving out of the city and into a secluded, country home. Last year, my husband and I made that dream a reality when we found a great deal on a custom home in East Texas.
This house is amazing and, due to the previous owner's financial problems, we happened upon it just days before foreclosure and got a steal. I only had one reservation about moving my family into the wilderness -- would I be able to work sufficiently from this remote area? In other words, would I have a fast Internet connection so I could keep in contact with my editors in the civilized world?
"Absolutely," assured my lovely realtor. The broadband in the area was just as fast as what I was used to. She should know, as she uses it herself. This would, of course, be one of many fibs she told me for that sizable commission.
As it turns out, we cannot receive DSL or cable Internet at our country paradise. Our only resort is satellite broadband from HughesNet. "It's almost as fast as DSL," they assured me. This was almost as laughable as the yokels they sent out to install the satellite (My installer was driven by his buddy, as his license was recently revoked after a DUI. Lovely, thanks for sharing, Cletus!).
Not only is satellite broadband barely faster than dial-up , you have daily download restrictions. This means that if I want to watch a 20-minute YouTube video or listen to a podcast, I will be punished by having my Internet turned off for 24 hours! I learned this the hard way, while trying to make a deadline no less.
Of course, there is also the iron-clad contract I am stuck in and the fact that I had to pay $500 for the satellite equipment. My satellite dish malfunctioned two weeks ago... just after my warranty ended. I am now waiting in limbo for a replacement part and relegated to working from a coffee shop 30 miles from my home.
If I were a spiritual woman, I might consider this some sort of karma for landing a cheap home due to another person's financial ruin. But I'm not a spiritual person. This month, I am blaming HughesNet for all of my professional problems and my newly developed caffeine addiction (are your ears supposed to ring like this after three lattes?)