Chapter 18: In Which All Systems are Down
On April 24th, 2011, my beloved MacBook’s hard drive suffered a critical failure. In this age of computers, one of the worst things that can happen is the death of a hard drive. No matter how diligently we back up our data and despite the ever growing sophistication of data recovery methods, dead hard drives often take a significant portion of our data with them. Turns out dead men aren’t the only ones who tell no tales.
The 24th happened to be Easter morning and the family I was living with kindly brought me a traditional Georgian Easter meal.
And yes that is a bottle of wine behind the tray. It was incredibly generous of the family to share their food with me, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. As I was finishing up dessert, the music playing on my computer stopped and that most dreaded of images came on the screen.
Nothing? Well, sorry I couldn’t be of more help. At least all of my data is adequately backed up on this external hard drive…wait, that’s right. I was just about to re-backup the data after having to wipe the external hard drive due to some data corruption. Awesome.
The death of the hard drive meant the loss of a lot of data I thought was adequately backed up. It wasn’t. Long story short, I may have lost a year’s worth of data in the blink of an eye. I spent the rest of the day enquiring if there was a place to get my computer fixed in Kutaisi (the nearest big city). The answers were less than encouraging.
“Sure, as long as you have a PC there should be no problem…it’s a mac? You’re screwed.”
“Of course. Where is it? No clue.”
“I know a guy who has a friend who knows someone that might be able to tell you where to go.”
I finally gave up hope and decided to head back to Tbilisi to get it fixed. As luck would have it, there was a store there that was able to replace the hard drive, give me all new software and have it back to me in a day. All that for a reasonable amount of money too. Unfortunately, they were not able to recover the data from the old hard drive. My hope is that upon my return to the US I will be able to find someone who can recover the data. Inshallah.
Due to the computer outage, I lost a week of work getting the computer repaired and another couple days reloading all the programs I needed to start the field season. At the time, I was sure it was the end of the world. Looking back on it now, however, it was just the kick in the pants I needed to help me deal with the further frustrations the season was to heap upon me.
I know I have been terrible lately about keeping up with this blog. I hope to post a couple more times before leaving Georgia (which I do in exactly 4 days. YIKES!). I promise the next posts will have more scenery and actually have something to do with archaeology. Hope this post finds you all well. See you on the other side of the pond very soon!