I just returned to my computer tonight and was delighted to discover my internet running at 50/50 Mbps. Wahoo! (Dan, Alan, I don’t have an address for Justin or Thomas, but please pass on my thanks to them and all the staff.)
I didn’t expect this fix to happen until next week, but once again, you guys came through and went the extra mile to find that kink. We Orcas denizens are not accustomed to this kind of excellent service.

Background: I was the second Spring Point user to come on line last week, but unfortunately had a nasty, hard-to-find glitch which kept the up/down speeds fluctuating below 25 Mbps. When I called this in on the Rock Island help line, I quickly got the whole team press to make it right. The task included methodically eliminating the possible gremlins in the modem, the connectors, and the vaults. It was a truly confounding gremlin which allowed a “ping” or red light passage back up 16,000 feet of fiber line, but nonetheless wouldn’t support the full speed. Amazing that you guys could even track down a single fiber wrinkle!

But what is more amazing is the human attention I got — at least two late-evening work sessions by Alan and Justin, several extra day trips to Spring Point, repeated calls from Dan to schedule and coordinate service, and even a call-back from San Juan to Orcas for Justin to work on my glitch in some very wet vault conditions. Wow! I believe that many of us on Orcas have become conditioned to a sort of hair-trigger cynicism about repair services, timely work, and scheduling disappointments. Orcas is, after all, a small market with limited personnel and difficult terrain — we get it. That’s what makes it so amazing when we get this kind of excellent service and attention from Rock Island.

In fact, the entire Middle Mile fiber installation in Spring Point has been amazing, under budget, and completed timely. Yes, a few unmapped phone and water lines have been broken in the process, but these were rapidly mended. The contractor excavation work has also been excellent, especially given the Spring Point rocky terrain — but you can drive in Spring Point now and barely tell that miles of fiber has been installed.

Most important — even better than the technical skills and professional services — is the attitude and courtesy which the Rock Island team and their contractors have displayed. It has been great to associate with a bunch of folks who are enthusiastic about their work, and motivated by their conviction that they are delivering a valuable resource and good product for the San Juan County community. I’m not sure who has inspired that kind of spirit or how it is being maintained, but GOOD JOB ! The traditional OPALCO code of excellence is being well represented by Rock Island.

Please feel free to relate this story, and my appreciation, to the OPALCO Board or anyone who may need to know.

Norm Zimlich