I’m of a child of the ‘pen and paper’ era. I did my schooling without the assistance of computers and calculators and if I needed information I went to the library. Is it any wonder that I get confused every time I try to do anything that is even remotely technical? Confused isn’t really the right word, the words I want are angry and frustrated.
I have created the web site for the Playa Paraiso en Magante (paraisoenmagantedr.com) and in doing so have mired myself in the technical world of the internet. I can say this right off, it’s a gong show!!! I’m quite certain that Murphy is in charge of the whole thing because anything that can go wrong… does. In just a few short months I have managed to build, destroy, rebuild, totally erase, rebuild again and then in a matter of milliseconds have chunks of the site stop functioning. The only thing I’ve learned is that screaming at my laptop doesn’t fix anything!!!
Creating a web site requires patience, the same kind of patience that you need to raise a child. Just like an infant child, a web site will tell me there is something wrong but I have no idea how to understand what it is saying. The only term I understand is the phrase ‘fatal error’ and all I understand about that term is that ‘fatal error’ is a bad thing! A ‘fatal error’ can erase all my work if the next action I take is the wrong one. I can sit for an hour staring at the ‘fatal error’ message, frozen by indecision, afraid to hit the back button or enter any direction for fear of making the ‘fatal error’ permanent (see destroy, totally erase). I’m not a total idiot but I play one in front of my computer.
There are companies all around the world that will offer to build your web site for a fee. I know they are all around the world because they have been calling my cell phone number ever since I registered the domain with the web host. The bastards gave out my cell number!!! I have received calls from Austria, Germany, Malaysia, India and the good ol’ U S of A, all trying pedal there services. “We can customize a site especially for the Par-Izo-n-Ma-Gon-T”, they tell me. Why would I pay them to do something that I can do for free? They can’t even say the name right!!!
This is something that I am determined to handle myself. I can deal with the ‘fatal error’ message when it appears even if it means starting fresh. I am not building a web site for a multi-million dollar chain of luxury all-inclusive resorts; this is a small operation that requires a functioning web site. One that people can use the way I would like to be able to use it. A web site that will inform the public of what the ‘Playa Paraiso en Magante’ has to offer and how they can reach us. This is not rocket science! I can do this without the need of a so-called professional!! I believe I know what the PPEM needs more than someone that has never left their mom’s basement!!!
The PPEM is not about big business, it’s about friends and community. It’s about the beach and the serenity that surrounds the area. It’s about meaningless conversation over a cerveza and a meal. It’s about the place that people at the big resorts are talking about when they say, “…wouldn’t it be great if we could stay at a place where there wasn’t a crowd”, as they make their way to the beach at dawn to reserve a beach lounger. These are the people that would love the Playa Magante. I’m simply creating a path for those few people to find their way there. A path that is smooth and free of ‘fatal error’ potholes.
I know I can build and tend this path and I want to build and tend this path. I don’t lack for confidence. I may lack in the ability department but I’m not too proud to seek help, and help is out there at no charge to the consumer. You just need to look.
Just the other day I discovered that my web host (yes the same bastards that gave out my cell number), offer ‘live chat’ technical support and already I have been able to get them twice to repair a ‘fatal error’ that I have caused. I didn’t have to do a thing; both Shamir and Mohabir sent the instruction right up to Murphy to implement immediately. I could see instantly that the changes had solved my problem and I ended my ‘live chat’ with a thumb up/smiley face. Two days later the ‘Law’ took effect and I had to re-install every plug-in on the web site! I know you’re asking Uncle Jeremiah… a plug-in is something you add to your web site that allows it to perform certain tasks such as translation or bookings. No plug-ins means you have a web page with a picture that does nothing… no plug-ins is bad. No plug-ins is a ‘fatal error’.
So as you can see, why would I pay someone else to fix things only to have something new break? I can do that myself for free. Yes, it takes me more time to fix my ‘fatal errors’ but the truth is that I like doing it. It allows me help the people I call my friends and stay connected to a place I love, on a regular basis. It’s a gong show dealing the frustrations of the technical side of the internet and its ‘fatal errors’. Every day is a new adventure when I check paraisoenmagantedr.com but I do so because I choose to, not because I feel any obligation. I want Wendy to succeed in the restaurant business and I want Ginger and The Earl to visit their island estate and enjoy a relaxing vacation without the need to put out a fire. By tending the internet path to the PPEM I can help make that happen, and that makes me happy… that and yelling at my laptop.