That's really all I can say.
While hubby was in Mexico I had to call a couple of times. To give Western Union numbers etc...
1ST lets talk about the phone cards.
Even though I understand Spanish, why is there not an option for English? Are Spanish speaking people the ONLY ones who use phone cards. After hearing "por favor marque su codigo secreto" a million times it would have been nice to switch it up a little and hear "please dial your secret code now." You buy a $5 phone card and your "tiempo disponible" (available time to talk) is like 270 minutes and it goes quickly (I'm assuming) due to bad connections. I'd call, the call wouldn't go through. When I tried again...all of a sudden my "tiempo disponible" is 250 minutes. Ummm, where did those twenty minutes go I had 3 minutes ago?
Hubby was in el rancho y en la cuidad (the city). He was at his moms, his sisters, his brothers, his tia's. I'd talk to him and we'd make arrangements to talk again later that night. Not knowing where he was going to be, I was instructed to just call everybody until I found him. It never failed I always got intouch once I dialed my last possible number. No one would answer, the connection would be bad and I could only hear a few words and some static. Once we finally connected and were in full conversation I'd suddenly find my self talking sola! Hello? Hello? Are you there? .....silence
Ughh! Frustrating. The call was either dropped or the connection went bad.
I know my accent is not perfect...actually no where near perfect. I've had this problem in the past and find it extremely frustrating. Saying the number tres is a BITCH! Occasionally I'd have to send money to a relative of hubby's. Can't send it to him because he does not have a Mexican ID to pick it up with. Usually I tried to text the code... but occasionally I had to call with the code. Everytime I say tres the relative on the other end hears seis! This can be very confusing. I'm like, no no no, no es seis, es TRES! Como uno, dos, TRES! Now imagine the call dropping or a bad connection while you are trying to pronounce TRES correctly.
(And don't get me started on using the 2nd last name when it comes to sending Western Unions, double confusing.... differnt subject, different post)
Gracias a dios que Daniel explained to me "when" and "when not to" dial a one after the country and state codes. If he wouldn't have done that before he left I would have had to contact some of my Facebook friends that live in Mexico for help. Times are a changin' and cell phones are everywhere. Apparently if you dial a cell phone # you must put a 1 in a certain place. I wrote them all down on a sheet of paper before he left. Smart thinking on my part. Seriously! I felt like a mathematician. Calling card #s, secret code #s, 011-52-(to dial a one, to not dial a one???) 866/867, then the phone number. You should see my sheet of paper! It looks like a was trying to figure a serious math problem out!
You never know who is going to answer the phone! It might be the person you are calling or it might be the cunado/a, the neighbor, a friend....quien sabe! (who knows!) There were 2 times someone answered that I wasn't expecting. Maybe it was because I'm not use to hearing them speak Spanish but at this point I'm highly suspicious that "let's confuse and play with the gringa" may be a new type of international calling fun for them. Por ejemplo (for example):
Me- "Hola. Daniel esta?" ("Hello, is Daniel there?")
Other person- "Quien es?" ("Who is this?")
Me- "Soy Tara." ("This is Tara.")
OP- "Ah, si, si. No se fue pa la montana." (Oh, yes, yes. No, he went to the mountain.)
Me- "Como?" ("Huh?")
OP- (now they are really having some fun and talking as fast as possible) "Si, se fue pa la montana, la aloma, bla bla, cactus, talking really fast, caballo, bla bla" ("Yeh, he went to the mountain, the hill, bla bla, I think I hear the word cactus, talking really fast, horse, bla bla...")
and I give up and hang up.... Call a different # and guess who answers. Hubby!
Me- "Where are you?"
Hubs- "With my brother and ama (mom)."
Me- "En el rancho?" ("At the ranch?")
Hubs- "Yeh. Why?"
Me- "Just curious, I thought you may be on top of a mountain or riding a horse..."
Me- "Forget it... Whatcha doin?"
So, although it was nice to practice my Spanish speaking skills and learn all about international calling....I'd be lying if I said I was sad it's over. I'm thankful for the experience because if there was ever an emergency and I needed to get in touch with someone, I could. Although, an international cell phone plan is sounding like a good idea to me right about now.
What are some of you international calling experiences?