Monthly Archives: December 2018

A Short Note on Difficult Customers -Part II – and a Case of Really Bad Packing

We settled the complaint. The boss offered him 100 extra coins and that seems to have done the trick. This was pretty much what we had expected.

During the discussion it became clear that the customer didn’t have a great deal of coin knowledge and had ordered the wrong thing.

You have to take this sort of thing philosophically…

Meanwhile, having secured a new item for my collection, at a cost of £27 plus £2 P&P I have a new low to report in packaging. The item is a watch fob and is just over an inch high. It was delivered in a box around six inches square and 3/4 inch deep. It’s an excessively big box for a small item.

Worse than that, the fob was just thrown into the box loose without the benefit of any protection or padding.

Regardless of the fact that it arrived undamaged it doesn’t inspire buyer confidence to see things treated this way.

Ah well, moaning over for now.

A Short Note on Difficult Customers

Sometimes on eBay you run up against an immovable object. With over a thousand items listed for sale at any time we are obviously going to make mistakes. In nine months we’ve sent the wrong item twice and had one complaint about quality. That’s less than quarter of a per cent.

We now have another complaint. With hindsight we should have expected it as the buyer asked for a discount before buying. We politely declined but he ordered anyway. We then had a letter of complaint telling us this was the worst lot he’d ever bought and various other things.

We offered him his money back.

He’s just replied that we’ve missed the point. He doesn’t want to send them back for a refund, he wants to struggle selling them and moan that the charity he sells for will lose money. He’s very keen to tell you he sells for charity.

There’s not much you can do to help some people.

Cynicism prompts me to suggest that his next note will contain a threat about negative feedback and another suggestion about discount. After all, he does sell for charity you know…

White Rajahs and Other Stories

Today started with a blood test. I aimed for ten past seven to avoid the arguments we had last time and arrived at 7.16. Instead of the machine there was a box of printed cards, which didn’t inspire confidence. I took card number 18.

On a brighter note, there were only a few people waiting and when they called for Number 15 I realised some people were waiting for other things.

The day started to look better.

After a swift test I was able to get home quickly enough to take Julia for breakfast and then get her to work on time.

They are hoping to get the ticket machine fixed tomorrow. Apparantly it was chaos on Monday when it broke.

Taking things back to Monday night, the main news is that I’m booked in for a tooth extraction next Tuesday and a blood test on Monday – it needs to be within 72 hours of the extraction, though I’m not quite sure how it helps. I’m on anti-coagulants so I’m going to bleed. You don’t hear about too many people bleeding to death from tooth extractions so I’m not too concerned. If the dentist wants to worry that’s up to him. Or her.

They rang to arrange that just as I was leaving home for the monthly meeting of the Nottinghamshire Numismatic Society. The subject was The White Rajahs of Sarawak, and was very good. It was reasonably entertaining and I learnt quite a lot of interesting stuff. One of them lost an eye in a hunting accident when in his 80s. He was known for being careful with his money so popped down to the local taxidermist (he was living in Devon in the days when towns had taxidermists) and bought a job lot of glass eyes. His favourite, it seems, was an Albatross eye.

If he’d been poor he’d have been regarded as an idiot, but as he was rich, with a private kingdom, he was merely eccentric.

 

 

A Good Start to the Week

Just thought I’d mention that if you happened to be browsing Haibun Today there are a couple of haibun in there under my name (Wilson, that is, not Quercus).

I was just looking through links, deciding which editor to inflict my next group of submissions on, when I remembered that they should be out. They are, and I had a pleasant moment seeing my name in print. In fact, there have been intermittent feelings of happiness all day, with a touch of smugness now and again.

It’s a mixed feeling. I’m happy to see them published, but I’m also slightly embarrassed because there are far better ones published in the same edition and am now thinking that I really should do better.

It’s similar to the problem I’m having with my next round of submissions. When I had nothing published I had nothing to lose. Now that I have had a couple of acceptances I have a standard to compare myself to, and work that would at one time have been sent out, is now sitting in a file because I’m now not sure it’s good enough.

I suppose this is fear, and fear is why we don’t do things. It’s good in some ways, because I’ve avoided lions, poisonous snakes and bungee jumping, which are all potentially fatal. However, the fear of foreign travel, salad and failure may well have held me back from a more interesting life. I do try to see failure as a step on the way to success, but it can be hard.

I am now going to look at my name in print again. Despite my misgivings there are worse things to do.

The photos have nothing to do with the subject of the post, but everyone loves a baby seal, apart from fishermen and furriers, so I thought I’d use it again. The seagulls are just there because I decided I wanted a floating bird of the day.

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Black-headed Gulls in winter plumage

 

 

 

Outline of a Day

Got up.

Panicked.

Took Julia to work early.

Discussed setting Julia’s watch to the correct time.

Went home.

I then searched for the washing machine change, packed the washing and went to do the washing. I expect, due to a touch of dramatic foreshadowing there, that you had guessed that.

Planned next week’s menu.

Read.

Gave a lady change. I don’t normally do this, as I believe you should organise your own life, not expect me to do it, but she asked nicely.

Went round the duck pond. Reflected in a pensive and poetic manner.

Shopped.

Put four bags of old clothes in collection bin. Julia appears to have been hoarding clothes since around the turn of the century.

Went home.

Had curry for lunch (left over from earlier in the week).

Fell asleep.

Picked Julia up.

Fell asleep in front of TV.

Woke up.

Ordered pizza.

Only just posted before midnight!

The best laid plans…

Slowly writing…

I’m sitting here typing slowly and watching repeats of old comedy programmes. There are worse ways of spending an evening – I could be watching the news, for instance. I read something a couple of years ago which recommended avoiding the news for the sake of your mental health. It seems to have worked as I am now happier and without actively seeking out the news I seem to absorb all I need to know.

As I type I drift off from time to time to wash up, browse eBay, read a new poetry book that arrived today, or make cups of tea.

Picture of Hedd Wynn’s statue from an earlier visit. That was the day we saw the Red Kites.

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That’s how I’ve managed to spend three hours writing just over 100 words.

From the writing perspective it’s unimpressive. From a procrastination perspective it’s world class.

 

 

Lost for Words

As usual I have so much to say that I’m running out of brain to process it all.

It rained this morning. It was heavy, it was windy and, apart from the temperature looked very much like a gusting tropical storm. And it was dark – more like evening than morning.

I had coffee in the garden with Julia in a cold metal container with no lighting and took several photographs. They have removed the bicycle and put up a Christmas Tree.

This is Julia’s work. Cold, wet and dark.

After that I went to work, packed some parcels, added some more items to the eBay shop and went home. There was slightly more to it than that, but nothing that I haven’t said before.

This is what my work involves – it’s warmer and drier but I can feel my will to live ebbing away. It’s also what the Queen does for a living. I think she probably comes out of this better than me and Julia.