Apple vs. Paypal – a parable


Yesterday, there was a massive power surge in Dhasa — enough that it started to fry my Mac power cord (thank god not my computer!) It was bad enough that the power was shut down in the whole state for 8 hours yesterday while they fixed it. Such is India.

As my cord is currently held together with electric tape, and I’m here for another month and a half, I freaked, and talked to my friend in the States to send me another. Luckily I had had the presence of mind to get AppleCare after I got my Mac.

I called into Apple, and got through in less than 2 minutes. I gave them my serial number, and explained that my cord was fried. Within another 2 minutes, they made a note on my account, and said my friend could go to ANY Mac store, and get it for free to send to me.

Simple, polite, and cool. Seriously, Mac has got it together.

That brings me to PayPal. Back in August, I had made a transfer for the Hope Center, from their PayPal to their bank account. Since day one, there have been problems, things like their monthly limit not lifting because of ‘bugs’. Every month I have to call in, explain to no less than 4 people the situation, before I can get to an ‘escalations’ department manager. Well, since August, that large transfer has been missing. I called in before I left the States to hear, “You need to verify your bank information.” Well, when we started the account, we uploaded no less than 10 forms of ID and paperwork. I could go on for a while, but let’s just say that last nite, and midnight I talked to the third person in escalations, who really wasn’t sure why a trace hadn’t been started, even after we submitted the band information no less than 8 times, and why there had been no reply to 8 emails in the past week.

It has taken now 2 months to get PayPal to start a trace on the Center’s money. I still don’t know where it is, but I’m supposed to get a phone call today.

Seriously, I think this is a parable for so many things. You can take responsibility, trust someone who comes to you with a problem, and say, “Yes, I can help you and will do it now.” Or, you can be mistrustful, only worry about yourself, “There’s a problem? That’s not my problem. Not sure why that happened.”

I Love the ‘Mac’ people in the world — one’s that are proactive, that want to help, that look at the big picture. I understand that there are ‘PayPal’ people too — one’s that believe everything is someone else’s problem, not theirs, and maybe if they wait long enough it will all just go away. As of today, I am just reminded that it takes all kinds, and at least I’m learning to be patient. But when you know a small non-profit needs that money desperately to pay their rent, and provide books for their students – books that will change their students’ lives through education — I’d be lying if I didn’t say it puts a really sour taste in my mouth.

That aside, things are moving forward here. I’ve found a location for the SamaSource program — that too took patience. I’m looking now for a project manager, and then to set schedules to bring the trainers here.

The Dalai Lama is teaching for the next 7 days, so the town is full, and my regular class schedule is tentative – trying to get in classes in between the teachings.

My friend Chin is in from Australia, so I’ll be catching up with him throughout the week. In the meantime, I just wanted to say, I hope everyone has a ‘Mac’ kind of week!

Best, Heidi

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