Almerimar

In the last 10 days or so we have had 3 early morning power glitches in our apartment. The power goes off for a second or two sometime between 6 and 7am. It is a bit of a nuisance as our phone lights up and makes a tinkling noise when it restarts. Even worse, the first time it happened it caused the fire alarm to go off in the garage of our apartment block. Not a very nice way to be woken up early in the morning.

Hopefully they will stop happening soon.

Just a quick update on our phone and fibre-optic internet set up as everything is now completed.

As mentioned earlier our fibre-optic internet was installed by our new supplier a week ago. The other part of the work was to port our landline phone number from the old supplier to the new one.

For the last week I have had to leave our landline phone connected to the phone socket from the old supplier. From there I could make and receive calls. If I plugged the phone into the phone socket on the fibre-optic internet router I could only make calls from the landline, not receive them.

The porting of the number was well organised. On Monday (31 October) I received a text message from the new supplier saying that the change would take place today (2 November). The text said I had until 7pm on Monday evening to cancel the porting of the phone number if I wished to do so.

I have just checked this morning and the landline is now working fully when connected to the telephone point on the fibre-optic router.

The last thing left to do is to fill in and sign a form that our new supplier has sent to us. Confirming bank account details for payments etc. This is mainly confirming information that we filled in on an online form when we contracted with the new supplier via their website. Once we have completed and signed the form we just have to return it to them in a pre-paid envelope they sent us.

Sunset - 1 November 2016

I just happened to wander out onto the terrace a few minutes ago and saw the sun going down over the sea. Luckily I managed to go inside quickly and pick up my phone so I could take this snap.

It does not seem that long ago when the sun was going down over the mountains. Winter is on its way.

UPDATED 27 October 2016 - 16:15 Spanish time - added information about transferring the phone number to the new supplier. See bottom of article....

We got fibre-optic internet installed yesterday. It was a bit of a struggle as the engineer started at around 9am but the service did not start working until around 5:30pm. So I had to miss out on playing in Wednesday golf yesterday.

Apparently we had some problems with the cables in the street. The work in our apartment block only took around 1-2 hours. So I guess this is how long it would normally take to install without problems in the cables in the street.

I contracted for a symmetrical 200 megabits per second service. This means that the connection should be a similar speed when downloading and uploading. If you do not contract for a symmetrical service it is cheaper but the upload speed is not as fast. (Upload speed is important if you are, for example, sending lots of big documents or photos by email).

I have done some testing of the service.

On a computer with a modern ethernet adapter wired directly to the router the speed was about 200 mbps either way. The speed that I am contracted to get.

We have a couple of laptops that I connected via ethernet cables and tested them. They both achieved around close to 100mbps both ways. I guess this was due to the ethernet adapters in the laptops being older and only supporting speeds up to 100mbps.

I then did some tests over wifi using the laptops and some mobile devices. The wifi speed was somewhat more variable. With typical speeds of around 20-40 mbps download and 20-30 mbps upload. I also did a speed test on the two laptops at the same time over wifi. The combined total upload and download speeds were about the same as when I did the test on one laptop. So it appears that the wifi connection is a bit of a bottleneck.

When I had ADSL the download speed was typically around 6 mbps and the upload speed typically around 1 mbps. So I guess I should be happy with the improvement.

One final thing, I changed suppliers of the broadband. So my landline needs to be transferred from one provider to another. The engineer said this should take place automatically after around 2 days. Today the landline is still working on the connection from the old supplier. I will have to check that this changes (and I will then have to plug the phone into the fibre-optic router). Plus I guess I will have to ensure that the phone and ADSL contract has been terminated with the old supplier.

ADDED LATER - 27/10/16 in the afternoon

I have now spent a bit of time on the phone to the old supplier plus got internet access to our online account with the new supplier. The transfer process seems very easy as long as when you place the order for fibre-optic internet with the new supplier you say you want to maintain the same landline number.

The process appears to be an automatic one. I need not have phoned up my old supplier to try to cancel my contract with them. The new supplier of the landline and fibre-optic internet is sorting it out with them. The online account with the new supplier that has now been set up says that the phone number will be transferred from the old supplier to the new one in less than 1 week from now. It also gives details of the 3 steps of the process: 1. They phone us for an appointment for the engineer (done). 2. The engineer does the installation taking 2-3 hours (says by next Monday but they have already done it). 3. They transfer the landline number across from the old supplier to the new one (says by mid/late next week).

I have just updated the site to use the latest version of Joomla. This is just a test story to ensure things are still working OK.

I have just been talking to our friend, John A, about the Francis House charity golf week that finished with a gala prize giving dinner here in Almerimar last night. As a lot of people probably know John has helped run events in Almerimar supporting this charity for many years.

John said that the event taking place in the last week was a great success and once again a lot of money has been raised for a really good children's charity.

 

Sune and Marianne organised their first golf competition of the season yesterday. This winter the competitions will be taking place on Wednesday.

Thanks to Sune and Marianne for a very enjoyable day yesterday.

Apartment for rent - October 2016

One of our readers has been in touch about an apartment in Almerimar that they have available for rent. You can see more photos in the Gallery.

Here is what they wrote....

"We have an apartment in the centre of Almerimar for Rent.  

The apartment has three bedrooms and is fully furnished. One of the bedroom could be used as a studio.

It would suit a quiet couple."

Please get in touch if you are interested and we will provide you with contact details for the owners of the apartment.

Further to the earlier story published on Sunday about moving this site to a new server.

This work is now complete. So hopefully everything is now back to normal again.

If you spot any problems with this site please let me know. Thanks.

The hosting company for this site and the FGS website will be doing some maintenance work overnight sometime in the next few days.

Both sites are likely to be unavailable for a while at some point in the next few days.

When the work has been completed among other improvements there will be more capacity to allow for better back-ups of the sites.

 

I had reason to have a look in the comms rooms in our block today. While there I noticed a brand new Movistar box on the wall of one of the two comms rooms. As yet, our second comms room did not have a new Movistar box on the wall. However it looks like there was a fibre-optic cable linking the two comms rooms.

So it looks like Movistar are part way through installing fibre-optic internet in our block.

As yet, I have not heard or seen anything from the other suppliers (Jazztel, Orange etc.).

I have heard that some people from the area who are studying English may soon be getting in touch with me. To discuss the idea of setting up some form of regular cultural exchange meetings in Almerimar.

As yet I do not have any details of what is being proposed. However I think the idea is something like setting up a regular weekly meeting in a bar in Almerimar where they can practice their English.

I think the idea is that the Spanish students would like to meet with English speaking people to discuss a wide range of topics. This would be to help them improve both their spoken English and their vocabulary.

If the request comes in I think that the students will be looking for some English speaking people who are willing to give up an hour or two of their time once a week. On a regular basis when they are over in Almerimar.

If any readers might be interested in helping out the students with their English please can you let me know.

The article here on the Think Spain site has details.

From the limited knowledge I have of the local market here I think that more sales are going through at the moment. I am not sure whether these are at higher prices than in the recent past.