Our friend Sue came over this morning to help us try to cancel our subscription to SFR…..the company that’s been providing our telephone service and wi-fi internet access.
We had heard that cancelling services isn’t always easy in France…..so we began the process last week at Sue’s house. Sue dialed the SFR’s helpline and, after diligently following their directions to press button after button, was finally informed…..by a recording…..to send them an email.
We returned home and I scoured SFR’s website for an email address. It took hours of wading through screen after screen. I found information (all in French, needless to say) on upgrading service, on replacing broken equipment, on how to pay your bill…..but there was nothing on how to cancel their service.
With nothing to lose, I sent an email to the Payment Questions helpdesk…..informing them (in my best Google Translated French) that I don’t speak French but will moving back to the US and need to cancel our service. Two days later, I received a reply!
What did SFR say? That I must call their helpline to begin the process and, since I don’t speak French, perhaps I could ask a French speaking friend for help. And what phone number was I told to call? You guessed it…..the same one Sue had called a few days ago.
It’s like deja-vu, all over again.
So that’s why, on this crisp Autumn morning, Sue was at the cottage dialing SFR’s number…..again. But this time…..this time, she got through!
Through to a recording…..that advised there was an eight minute wait. She waited and waited and waited…..as the recording continued to advise her of an eight minute wait.
The eight minute wait was neverending! Would the phone’s battery be strong enough to last? Was this SFR’s last ditch attempt to prevent cancellation?
Then, just as Sue had stopped pacing and comfortably settled in on the couch, a customer service rep finally answered. Sue spoke, she listened, she spoke, she listened, she wrote, she listened…..this went on for, ummm….maybe 8 minutes. When she finally hung up, she told us we’d have to send a letter (with return receipt requested) advising SFR that we need to cancel our service and, to avoid their €45 cancellation fee, we would also need to provide proof that our next residence will be in the US. After SFR receives the request, we’ll have 10 days to return their equipment to a location they’ll specify. Hmmmm……perhaps we should have started this cancellation process a little sooner. But, onward we proceeded…..and a letter (with a copy of our lease) was in the mail (with return receipt requested) by lunchtime.
That done, it was time for a little fun. We’d watched the construction of Polygone in Beziers over the past few years and, from it’s sleek look, assumed that it was a performing arts center. Not so….it’s a shopping center! We’d been wanting to check it out and since there’s no time like the present (especially for us right now), off we went.
The spaces in the underground parking garage were surprisingly spacious (even by European standards)…..Craig could actually drive straight in to a space. And this garage sported something I’ve never seen before….. “Family Spaces”…… made a little wider to give families with small children some extra elbow room.
Polygone was très chic. Escaltors rimmed with pink neon whisked us up to the three-level, multi-use, open-air gallery.
Christmas was in the air…..with a North Pole display, Père Noël in his sleigh and petite Christmas trees fronting each store.
One of their water features replicated the Fonseranne Locks…..a staircase of eight locks on the nearby Canal du Midi.
The window displays were mouth-watering……
as was (according to Craig) their poster-girl……
The third level had a lounge area (replete with warm blankets to guard against the chill)
…..and lots of restaurants (shhh….don’t tell anyone, but I think Bob’s Big Boy ran away to France…..who can blame him?)