The elusive cell phone signal

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By Lee Scott

Living in a large metropolitan city you normally don’t have a problem picking up your cell phone and chatting with someone at any time and any place especially in your car. The landscape is adorned with large cell towers to enable people to be connected. Oh, there are those times when you drive into a parking garage or a tunnel and the signal drops; but even that is changing as cell phone companies scurry to put repeaters in those areas so you never drop a call.

However, I have noticed that it is a little bit different living here in the Lowcountry, an area that is thankfully less populated. You can drive for miles looking at the scenic views and never see a cell tower. But that view comes with a price. It means that you will find yourself entering areas where there are no precious bars lighting up the phone. It is so strange to be driving along and one minute hearing a voice through the Bluetooth and then suddenly it disappears as you inadvertently drive into a dead zone. Of course, it does not take long after you move here to discover those special cell coverage zones where four or five bars light up on your phone. As a matter of fact, you have probably found yourself seeking those areas. I have personally discovered certain parking lots where I can pull into and complete a conversation before entering one of those “no cell phone service” zones. And sure enough, there are other people doing the same thing. You can spot them sitting alone in the car talking animatedly into the air.

Then there are communities where one side of the community has great coverage and the other side has none. You might even see a car sitting on the side of the road with the emergency flashers on and the driver’s hand sticking out the window holding up a cell phone, desperately seeking a phone signal. I confess to doing this myself!

But the good news is that we are not living in a large metropolitan area. We have beautiful views to enjoy and many places to pull over to make those calls. And I have discovered a spot where my phone calls are very rarely interrupted. Turns out my landline has excellent coverage.