I’m the kind of guy that gets caught up in the hype of new products. Marketers refer to me as an “early adapter.” But really, I’m just a gadget guy. Needless to say, I was all caught up in the release of the iPhone. I followed the stories in the news for months. Then came the big day, June 29 at 6:00 pm. I’m a little beyond camping out in line, but I did leave my office and go straight to the nearest AT&T store at 6:30, hoping the lines would have thinned out.

Just as I was about to get into the line the attendant said they were out of phones. I jumped in the car and rushed to the Apple store. As I arrived the line was quite long. There were about 80 people in front of me. However, I was amazed at how fast the line moved. I was out of the store, iPhone in hand, within ten minutes.

I raced home to activate the phone via iTunes, as required. Since I had existing service with AT&T, I thought it would be easy to keep my current number; I thought wrong. Nowhere in iTunes could I transfer my number to the new phone. I abandoned iTunes activation, got back in my car and rushed to the AT&T store once again. The AT&T employees said they could not help me. I was told to go home, create a new account and phone number in iTunes and return. They said, then they would be able to transfer my existing number.

I rushed home again and created the new account and phone number. Once again I was headed back to the AT&T store to get my existing number transferred to my iPhone. This time the clerk said he couldn’t transfer my number because it was an AT&T number. I explained that I have had the same number, with his company, for nine years. It is part of my identity and I am very fond of it. He said that if I was transferring my number from another carrier it would be no problem, but he can’t make my existing AT&T number work with my new AT&T account. He gave me a phone number to call for help.

The next morning I called the number and explained my situation. After over four hours on the line, I was told they could not help either. I was given another number to call. This went on for a couple of days until AT&T finally decided to blame Apple and quit taking my calls. So I started calling Apple. Being much more efficient than AT&T, Apple wasted no time in telling me it was not their fault and gave me a top secret AT&T number to call.

By this time I was very frustrated and gave up. Actually, not having a phone was getting to be nice. For the first time in years I didn’t have to remember to turn off my phone in a movie or get nasty stares for taking a call in a restaurant. I was quickly acclimating to my incommunicado status. But my love for gadgets eventually overcame my newfound peace and I continued my quest for iPhone connectivity.

Out of desperation I visited another AT&T store where a miracle took place. After three weeks, four trips to the store and 26 hours of phone calls my phone was finally fixed. And I love it. These iPhones are the greatest things ever — you should get one.