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Thread: Hello New World

  1. #21
    Editor Carlos Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Costco rocks. I've been a member for years and it's well-worth it. The only thing is I have to drive out of my way to get to them because there are none in my area, but it's still worth it.

  2. #22
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Update: Social Security Number card (well, printed on paper, not much of a card really) arrived exactly two weeks after I visited the Social Security Center. Just in time to take the number to the car dealer to pick up my new used vehicle.

    The car dealer doubled as an insurance agent, so he could drive the policy price a bit down with that SSN. I had to accept a $250 monthly policy without all that native US paperwork, but it is just for 6 months and then I can go shopping around.

    Getting money to the car dealer was a challenge in itself, but I got myself a US bank account in California even before I moved over, so by setting up phone calls between banks, I could move funds across the continent in time for the deal. Proud owner of a 6-year-old 78000 miles Kia Spectra now!

    Next challenge: Florida driver's license. Memorizing all the penalties for the offences is the hard part. It looks like the majority of the written exam questions is about reproducing figures. Not about responding properly to traffic situations on photos ("You are the tiny red car. Must you yield to the large barreling truck that comes from the right at 60 MPH?"


    Dutchie
    Last edited by Hoppie; 10-16-2011 at 10:39 AM.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Yeah the SS card is just a piece of paper. Always has been, I still have my original from when I was little

    As for the license, the test is multiple test, and its on a computer screen. I was most worried about that also when I took my test last year. Focus on learning the alcohol/ DUI laws, the weird lane stuff and the speed limits. I can't remember much about it now but it was focused mainly on that. And the first 5 questions were the stuff in the first chapter alone.

    Good Luck!

  4. #24
    Editor Christy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Glad to hear things are going well! At $250 per month for a 6 year old Kia, you should definitely shop around for better insurance.

    Progressive, Geiko, State Farm, Allstate to name a few that have to be cheaper. Even if you had a brand new bmw and a bad driving record your insurance should be less than $250.

  5. #25
    Editor Christy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Hey Dutchie,

    How did furniture shopping go? How do you like your apartment so far?

  6. #26
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    OMG $250 a month? What a rip-off! Please call my State Farm agent. PM me if you want her number.

    I got my driver's license in Miami in the 80s. I dread to think what that test is like right now. The major question on that test should be: "how do you deal with all the a-holes on the road?"

    Speaking of which, I need to renew my license next month. I'm thinking of making that an excuse to travel to the Keys DMV.

  7. #27
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Insurance is actually at Progressive. I told you, people without a FL license, driving history, credit rating etc. are simply not given any choice. Pay up or don't drive. Luckily just for six months. For furniture I got a table-and-four-chairs box at Walmart, likely meant to play cards at construction sites. It fits the 3/2 house nicely. I don't want to measure how many square feet are unused right now. When my family comes over with the sea container, that space will be full in no time flat. At work things cool down now, so I may actually get some time for myself. Dutchie

  8. #28
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Wow, three weeks without a posting.

    I'm still here, Matt :-D

    AT&T is very busy screwing up royally with their DSL connection, I've become a regular at the local AT&T shop, they know me and can expect me back tomorrow (Saturday). I told them: that physical wire is broken, come and fix it. Instead, they keep re-entering my "order" into their system, try again and again to have me pay the 100 bucks that I already paid up front in the shop, and every time add seven days to the activation day. Today an engineer actually dropped by to fix the line up to my front door. However I had indicated that also the wiring inside the house is hugely suspect and I don't mind paying for anybody to pull it out and rewire. They just re-enter my order and ask for my SSN, name, address, and USD 100. %@$#%^@$%#$@%

    After 72 minutes on the phone (talking, not even on hold or in queue) my battery ran flat.

    For the rest, work is great, weather is getting better all the time, and the house is starting to look like something.


    Dutchie

  9. #29
    Senior Member Doug's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Dutchie, maybe you should get a cable modem and just be done with it. If it's costing that much to have AT&T come out, you'd be better off just not dealing with it! They're not your only option.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Can you try Atlantic Broadband?

    I know At&T absolutely SUCK. I hate them. Their customer service is shocking, we changed our cells to T-Mobile this year cos I hate them so much. My aunt lives in Kendall and works from home with AT&T and always has problems too. Try and use someone else and feel comforted by the fact that they are universally crap, it's not just you.

  11. #31
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    I tend to agree by now.

    At the shop, the only thing they could do/would do is to point me at a wired phone in the corner and let me stand there talking to the customer support again. At least this time I could actually understand the guy talking to me. He confirmed that my order was canceled two times "because of technical issues". Essentially, some brilliant customer support **** had decided that since it wasn't working, the service must be unavailable to that particular area, and canceled. Without any other action, such as for example offering me my money back.

    Ok. Tomorrow (Monday) I will try to hand the complete box back to them and get my money back. This looks like an endless fight that I cannot win.


    Dutchie

  12. #32
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    I use AT &T for mobile but I have heard horror stories like these for cable service. Atlantic Broadband isn't perfect, but I've been using it for ages and generally very good for modem connections.

    Keep us posted, Dutchie!

  13. #33
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    I planned to take the box back to the AT&T store last Saturday, but then I got summoned to Charlotte, NC to fix up a couple of 767s for US Airways, and when I got back it was three o'clock already and I wasn't in the mood for a fight.

    Ah -- best moment to go there, I realised a bit later.

    Within 10 seconds I got a sales rep assigned that apparently knew what he was up to. He gave me coffee and seated me, and then said, "this is going to take an hour and you don't need to do anything, but I am going to completely rewrite everything the %$@%#@ hell desk has stored about you in their %$@%#@ system."

    And so he did.

    Then he set me up with their backoffice technician, and we made an appointment for him to drop by the house, pull out all wires, put in new ones from the street to the phone jack, and do not leave the place until I have IP feed going.

    It takes a month from initial purchase and it still isn't finished, but at least somebody at that shop (London Square, Kendall near Tamiami Exec airfield) knew how to appear customer-friendly.


    Dutchie

  14. #34
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Dutchie, you fix airplanes? How cool!

  15. #35
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Wow, very cool job! No wonder you got a visa to live here, that is quite a skill.

  16. #36
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Actually I am not supposed to fix up aircraft, I am supposed to design some boxes that go into aircraft and they should Just Work. But sometimes they mess up the wiring and the boxes do not Just Work. And then I can go there in the middle of the freezing night with a larger hammer.


    Dutchie

  17. #37
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    They let you fly with a very large hammer?! Lol

  18. #38
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Well at least you won't have to deal with the "freezing night" part here. Still, very cool job.

  19. #39
    Member Hoppie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    Charlotte definitely had a freezing night, brrrrr.

    I didn't bring a hammer, but what I had in my back pack (a full wiring harness for a satellite radio) SHOULD have triggered the interest of the security people. But no.

    Went to Naples and back today, scouting beaches for when my family will be here in late January. Barefoot Beach seems nice with the sea shells. They love those.

    Anything like that closer to Miami?


    Dutchie
    slowly looking for an opportunity to have a beer with known names from this Forum

  20. #40
    Senior Member Doug's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hello New World

    If you'd like something with a fishing village feel, Stuart has some charm to it. Much more laid back than Miami. If you like nature by the sea, parts of Hollywood are great -- nature walks through mangrove swamps and kayaks for rent. It's very peaceful, and worlds away from Miami to the south.

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