Sevcik's Blog

A year in Cairo Egypt

Monday, April 17, 2006

John and his new email account

John Omot, a Sudanese man who is our office assistant, decided he was at that point in life where he was ready and willing to open an email account.

I love when people are at that point, because it's something we take for granted in America. Everyone is "on line" at home. Not so here, and certainly not with a refugee community.

So, today was John's day. I had him sit next to me by the computer and after he agreed to a hotmail account I started the process of signing him in.

I didn't think it would be hard to sign him in, but it wasn't so simple either. I had to choose the country he lives in, so naturally I chose "Egypt". Later it asked for the postal code, but we don't have one or know of one hotmail would accept. So, we tried a few other round-about ways of getting an email account. Didn't work. Finally I resorted to saying John is from the US living in Minnesota with a Northfield MN zip code. Hopefully this will never come back to haunt him. ;-)

Once he choose an email address and password and finished the formality of it all (including our acceptance of the terms and conditions, as well as typing in the corrected coded script) we were set! I first showed John how to get into his email account, and then I sent him an email and asked him to try.

It's easy to forget how easy some things can be for me while so hard for someone else. John wasn't sure how to make the @ symbol, or how to tab from typing his email to typing his password. And of course when I said, "Click out, we will try again" he was completely lost. Duh, Sarah. So, I explained to him what the white X in the little red box in the right hand corner of the screen is all about. He knew that, and now he knows what "click out" means. (It is humorous how many times these common yet very Western/American/English phrases are brought up and misunderstood or not understood.)

We made it through the process, and I am pleased to say John Omot is a happily networked with the world now! It's really so exciting!


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker