Impressing the mom by fixing the Wifi


Before we drove back home, we passed by aunt Barbara’s. I always liked that place. It’s funny how many memories I have of things that happened in this house: being knocked over by their dog Bonzo when I was little and rolled a ball towards that boxer as a kind gesture, horse playing with Bernhard and Claudia, being stung by a bee in the garden and of course the hilarious chats with Barbara and Axel, who always had a direct from the heart commentary on what the neighbors did, politics or whatever.

I had not been here in years, but it feels like nothing has changed and everything felt quite familiar.

We sat down and the first thing I wanted to do (after coming from the disturbing internet white space that our hotel had been) was of course connect to the home Wifi and bring Lamia and the kids on screen, so Barbara could see them.

I picked the Wifi and asked Barbara for the password.
She told me.
It did not work.

Now, I am not surprised by getting wrong passwords for home Wifi by anyone who is above 55. So I asked again, but Barbara was 100% positive that the password she had given me was indeed correct. And if it did not work she gave me another one, but really, the first one should be correct.

So I asked for any funny spelling or upper / lower case combinations. But this did not help either.

While we were talking about this and that, I desperately tried to figure out the actual password in parallel. I guessed different lower / upper case sequences, changing the position of the numbers – you name it. 

All without success.
My mom was sitting next to me, giggling like a school girl because of these fruitless attempts. Clearly, she thought this would not go anywhere.

Noting my obvious distress, Barbara suggested I could try and connect via her computer or check out the Wifi router. The former I did not want (it’s nicer to have the connection right there in the living room on my 12.9 inch iPad Pro), so the latter sounded like a solid course of action.
In my aunt’s office I checked the cables to and fro the router and everything checked out fine. But: her computer was connecting via a LAN cable, not via Wifi which explained why she thought the password that did not work was correct.

The router is mounted to the wall, but luckily it sits on a frame that makes it possible to position a phone in such a way that enables taking a photo of the back of the device. Just like with every other router out there, on the back you have all the default information, including the default password. The second shot resulted in a good enough image of that password, I tried it and…

… there I was, having a working Wifi connection after all.
At that time I naturally assumed the router must have been reset at one point in time for whatever reason and when I casually brought this up, my aunt confirmed that this had been the case, indeed.

Now I could finally call Lamia, have her show Barbara the kids via FaceTime and everybody was happy.
And there was of course sweet, sweet gloating on my side over my mom’s incredulous face that I had indeed fixed that Wifi situation.

We left soon after, because we still had a few hours of traveling ahead of us. My parents let me drive the car and while I have painfully realized in the past how small a Mercedes E-class sedan is when you have kids and lots of luggage, driving that thing on the German autobahn is just brilliant. It was simply delightful to drive those 400-something kilometers to my home town…

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