Tag Archives: Amazon

Three Weeks In and I’ve Had Enough

I’m beginning to wilt under the pressure and nearly went shopping today on the way back from dropping Julia at work. We don’t need any groceries but the days are not as much fun in this second lockdown as Julia is at work and I’m beginning to find myself feeling a little lonely after three weeks of isolation without company.  Lockdown One – lie-ins, sunshine and company. Lockdown Two – up at 6.45, cold and lonely. I can’t imagine what it must have been like for people living on their own all through the first lockdown. I thought of the lack of freedom as the main problem, not loneliness. I have plenty to do so I don’t usually feel lonely. But I don’t usually have this much time to myself.

One thing I’ve noticed about the new computer is that it’s virtually silent and the case doesn’t even get warm despite being on for hours. This is very different from the old one.

Highpoint of the day has ben talking (a) to a scammer and (b) to Amazon customer services.

The first was an obvious scam because Amazon don’t have my home phone number so I asked if though t I was stupid enough to hand over my bank details to a random caller. He was very good at pretending to have hurt feelings. However, the third time I explained I thought he should have some sort of ID he put the phone down mid-sentence. I’m not sure even an Amazon employee would be that rude.

Of course, I had to go to my account to check it just in case and managed to lock myself out. They now send One Time Passwords over the phone as links rather than codes. I’m not online with my phone so I can’t use them and had to ring up.  To be fair, once we established that I had no intention of linking my phone to the internet, it all went quite smoothly as two polite, cheerful and intelligent members of staff sorted it all out for me. It’s not often you’ll here me say that after dealing with a customer helpline, so remember this moment. It’s ten out of ten for Amazon.

I don’t know why everyone needs you to be linked to the internet. Back in the 70s you didn’t have to walk round with a pocketful of carrier pigeons so why do we need a phone for everything?

And yes, it’s another cat. A good, old-fashioned cat that doesn’t need you to be linked to the internet so that it can treat you with indifference. On the other hand, if you die alone, a mobile phone won’t start to eat you.

It’s not actually a stamp, they just added a few pictures to the sheet of stamps – first time we had some I didn’t realise and counted it as a First Class Stamp.

 

Another Forgotten Title

Yesterday passed in a blur of activity.

Following straight on from the last post I spent half an hour reading other blogs, which included visiting India, the Philippines and Scotland. I then sharpened my brains with a cup of tea and a bit of sorting.

Another hour and I had sorted books, visited the New Forest by blog and read a couple of chapters of a book on how to write poetry. He’s just moving on to the chapter about bad poetry. I like that one. Time to put a pasty in the oven and get back to reading.

This is part of my commitment to self-education. As such, it is exempt from charges of skiving or procrastination.

I burnt the pasty because I got carried away reading.

After a lunch of soup and pasty flambé, I moved on to more sorting, wrote a couple of haibun (prose only – the haiku need time), picking Julia up from work, washed up, cooked tea (devilled sea bass with stir fry veg), finished the poetry book (it was only short), watched TV and fell asleep in the chair.

Today I rose at 6.49 – bladder-related rather than self-discipline) and came down to write before Julia gets up. It’s her day off. She has an exciting day of domestic chores in mind. I think she ought to relax.

I am not sure how I feel about sea bass. I’ve seen fish cooked so many times on TV I have to say that it went easily. It’s just that I don’t like fish that much. Plus, they were not generous fillets.

However, Julia said she enjoyed it.

On that subject, we had one parcel yesterday, containing the back-up gift. This was posted  with a 48 hour guarantee but took four days. The other arrived yesterday, having been posted the day before the other one. It had a big orange Signed For sticker, and was left stuck in the letterbox with the sticker showing to people who walked by in the street. It wasn’t too big for the letterbox, the postman just didn’t push it through.

I know that they are under pressure from Covid, but they are still charging full price for a service that they don’t provide, and leaving the orange sticker showing is like advertising the envelope contains an item of value.

At least it’s all done. I’m going to have to order weeks in advance for Christmas.

Meanwhile, back at the shredder, I fed an oiled sheet through after reading the 20 pages instruction manual. Yes, twenty pages, Seven languages.

Feed it through the shredder like a piece of paper. Then run the machine in reverse for 10 seconds. That’s it.

A couple of pictures – one of feeding a sheet into a shredder and one featuring a button marked “R”.

20 pages!

They came in cardboard box inside a stiffened card envelope. If Amazon really are committed to saving the world, as their TV adverts claim, I know where they can start…

Sorry, posted without a title. Have just corrected that.

 

A Trip to Town

As if I haven’t suffered enough already it’s the Numismatic Society of Nottingham tonight and the subject is the Pre-Decimal Currencies of Scandinavia. As I know nothing about the subject there is a good chance I will leave the meeting after having been thoroughly educated. However, as I have absolutely no interest in the subject there’s a good chance someone will have to wake me up at the end.

I fell asleep in the auction last month but nobody noticed, which is good news, as I obviously didn’t snore. If I fall asleep tonight I may get away with it.

You’d think I didn’t really enjoy the meetings from my descriptions, but I assure you I do. There’s always something to learn and people to see.

This afternoon I broke a deeply ingrained habit and went into town. I am that desperate to find a birthday present. I did manage a small present, but the trip was mainly notable for a urinating tramp and a non-working car park ticket machine system which refused (a) to take payment and (b) to let me out even though I’d eventually sorted it out and paid..

And they wonder why people prefer Amazon.

Start with “You don’t have to pay £3.80 to park at Amazon as rude people push you out of the way, sales assistants sneer and tramps urinate in the bushes and swear at people who object.” After that, the decline of the High Street starts to look logical.

I’m now going to have a nice sit down in front of the fire before going out again as I’m feeling the cold. That’s something else you don’t have to worry about with Amazon. You can shop on Amazon whilst sitting by the fire.

Five Ounce Silver Coin

Five Ounce Silver Coin

The coin went in the post this morning – five ounces of silver. It’s really a medallion but has been struck as a £10 coin of the Channel Island of Guernsey. No, I don’t know why they make them. Maybe they just have lots of silver.

 

 

More Trials and Tribulations

It’s my 30th wedding anniversary next week, as I may have mentioned.  I am married to a patient and forgiving woman with low standards in men. I am not sure if I have covered that before, but she certainly has. Last time she mentioned it was in relation to yesterday’s post.

It seems that if I’m the best that Western civilisation can mange it’s no wonder the world is in a mess. Amongst talk of male chauvinism, lazy stereotyping and Les Dawson (who was a well-upholstered British comedian with a great repertoire of mother-in-law jokes) it emerged that she felt I had slandered her in relation to snoring.

If I had my time over again I will resist the urge to explain that it was libel, not slander. It did not really help. Accuracy, it seems, is not always appreciated.

Fortunately, I have managed, by a mix of low cunning and good luck, to work out what to get Julia for a wedding anniversary present – perfume. I ordered it a couple of days ago from Amazon and it was delivered this afternoon.

Unfortunately,they didn’t deliver it to me.

They emailed this morning to say it would be delivered today, then again to say it had been left with a neighbour. I assumed that this meant it had been delivered to the home address despite me specifying the work address.

On my return home I found this wasn’t the case. There was no card through the door. So I checked on-line. They had delivered it to a neighbour of the shop, at 3.41, despite me being at work until 4.30.

I have just had a frustrating on-line “conversation” trying to find out how this could be. They are very apologetic, but short on facts.

I was very tempted to point out that if I wanted a bad parcel delivery service I would have engaged Hermes. In terms of poor service – slowness, half the parcel missing after a “security check”, theft and drivers cutting corners, Hermes are unequalled. I use them whenever I feel the need to have a delivery go unpredictably wrong. They rarely disappoint.

At least with Amazon it’s a one-stop situation – you buy from them direct and they even pack the soon-to-be-lost parcel for you. It saves time, but, to be honest, I do feel a certain loyalty to Hermes after all those hours chatting on the phone asking where my parcel is, or why my customer has just rung to complain half of it is missing.

There are, to be fair, other bad carriers apart from Hermes. You could give Parcelforce a try and, if you fancy a treat of a retro nature, move some goods by British Rail.

I will say no more. The anecdote about British Rail losing 400 day-old chicks is not very entertaining. Nor is the story of my marathon drive to track them down.

This is probably a good time to finish. More reused photos again as I keep leaving my camera at work. THey are a reminder of summer.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Small Tortoiseshell

Just a Quick Note

Following my run of bad luck, I now have no charger for my laptop. I’m currently sharing it so I didn’t try to use it until ten minutes ago. At that point Number Two Son informed me that it wasn’t working.

That leaves me with 30 minutes battery life, hence the briefness of the post.

Hopefully a panic order for next day delivery from Amazon will produce a replacement tomorrow.

It never rains but it pours…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Apple Blossom

 

It’s an age thing

Those of you who are my age (by which I mean you remember when 12 pennies made a shilling, young people didn’t mumble and Gerry Anderson was cutting edge technology) will probably remember a time when computers were going to save is time and we weren’t going to need paper in our offices. Well, the first bit of that is true, because we haven’t had a functioning printer in the office for 12 months and it’s amazing how little printing you really need to do.

The time-saving? It might have been true before the internet but since I’ve been able to shop on Amazon, read reams of useful stuff on Wikipedia and check links such as One man decided to explore an empty cabin…and instantly regretted it (32 photos). It wasn’t instant with me but after 6 boring photos I was starting to have second thoughts and after 32 slowly loaded and dull photos I definitely regretted it. Do not click the link, it is dull enough to kill.

I’ve just wasted half an hour trying to get my computer to type. It just stopped. I tapped harder, but nothing happened. I muttered, I checked the connections at the back (wouldn’t be the first time I’ve had a “computer malfunction” relating to the keyboard or mouse becoming unplugged!), I pressed all the buttons in turn, I started and re-started and started again…

I swore, bashed the keys, told my wife (a) I wasn’t shouting at a machine and (b) that I was perfectly capable of fixing it myself.

Finally, after neither of my assertions proved true, I bashed it harder. Finally, tiring of violence, I breathed deeply and thought peaceful thoughts. Then I noticed that the Alt key seemed lower than the rest.

In the end all it took was one swift dig from a penknife and the complex mass of…er… whatever is in a computer… was rendered functional once more.

A penknife. It’s only one step up from hitting it with a rock!