So, a nice but fast-talking man from the Indian continent called me yesterday from O2, my phone provider. He asked me if I was the holder of the account and then told me he was from the promo department and that he was going to send me an iPhone 10 for free. I’ve had a contract with them for 25 years so there was no issue of continuing to be on O2. I didn’t have to sign anything. So, the next day he was sending me the phone via dpd courier. I woke up today and soon after, the dpd courier arrived with my new phone. I didn’t open it. An hour later another kind man from the Indian continent rang and said I’m sorry sir but we have sent you the wrong phone. We have sent you the newest iPhone by mistake so if I wouldn’t mind, could I send the package back to the factory and for your trouble, we will send you a free Series 4 Apple Watch and we will refund you the cost of sending the phone back Special Recorded Delivery. As if I didn’t have enough to do but the deal seemed worth the trouble. So…
I went down to the post office, there was a queue of 15 people. So I went to look at the magazines and there was Songlines with Portuguese Fado singer Mariza on the cover. I bought it and left for pasty land. The nice heavy-accented man said he would call me at three o’clock to confirm I had sent the package back and if I could send him the receipt for proof. On the way up to pasty land, I ran into Steve from Junkwax Records and chatted to him about Portugal and the Sex Pistols gig in Penzance in the seventies.
By the time I got back to the post office, it was 3 o’clock and the nice Indian man called me. I told him about the queue and he said he’d call again in half an hour. In the meantime, I posted the phone to the factory (£8.50) and sent him the receipt. He’d told me my new phone and Apple Watch would be coming by dpd after the receipt was received between 6.30PM and 7.30PM. He didn’t call me back, I paid the £8.50 and the phone and watch didn’t arrive and I wasted a good chunk of my day with just six days to go before we leave for Portugal. But I live in hope for tomorrow.
The other day I had to ring the bank and a really fast-talking Scottish person with a thick accent hung up on me because when I told him that I couldn’t understand him he said: “Well, if you are going to call a Scottish bank in Scotland you might expect a Scottish person to answer”. This, of course, wasn’t the point – I didn’t understand him, imagine if I was that nice Indian man calling that rude Scottish man, what would have happened then? Anyway, as I said, he hung up on me as the conversation became heated because I started talking to him in a Liverpool accent (bad choice, he went to uni there). He told me he had no problem with the Liverpool accent and I told him he could do with a sense of humour in the wake of what was happening between us. He didn’t like that and told me so and so I told him to get on with his job and that was when he hung up on me and I had to go through the rigmarole of calling again (lots of hoops to jump through). This time I got a girl who was nice but had the thickest accent that I had ever heard, she spoke slower and I could understand her but like the other fellow, she seemed to be completely unaware of how difficult it was to understand her…and I’m English speaking. He could have said, ‘Oh sorry, I’ll speak slower’ but no, he immediately became defensive. Customer service isn’t what it used to be and he really made me feel like an annoying English person invading Scotland and its culture, not fair really. Imagine if you were struggling with learning English and you had to deal with these people. I will be that person in six days as I move to Portugal and don’t speak the language at all. Note that the two nice men from the Indian continent had no problem with me telling them I didn’t understand their particularly tricky accents, could they please speak more slowly – of course, no problem, thank you.
The day ran away from me and from 5PM I had four sessions, Ava in Minneapolis, Craig in Atlanta and Hans in Olympia – then dinner and Star Trek: Discovery and Noel in Surrey. Then I had to put all the guitars way, hoover, generally clear up, and by the time I sat down to write this, it was 12.30PM. Luckily I’d done some French in the early hours so I didn’t lose my Duolingo streak. I thought after all that hoo-hah, what am I going to write today, that’s why you got this.
Music today started with a crooner playlist from last night that I changed to one of my year by year playlists (1969) because Somethin’ Stupid by Nancy and Frank is ok once every few years but twice in 24 hours is too much. So it’s 13 songs that I picked months ago and one day I will share more playlists when I have three minutes on the same day, in fact, I’ll share this one tonight, so Ace Zarathustra’s Eclectic Train Wrecks presents some songs from 1969:
Still, I need to hear an album and Let It Bleed (1969) will do just fine.