Thursday, 24 July 2014
"Am I speaking to Ann C.......?"
"Yes, may I ask whose calling?"
"This is Choice Catalogue, how are you?"
"How am I?"
"Yes, how are you?
"Ummm - I'm OK - what are you calling me for?"
"Before I can tell you that I just need you to confirm your postcode so that I know I'm talking to the right person"
"But you are calling me.. why do I need to prove who I am when your the one that's calling ?"
"Because you could be anyone.."
"But you just called me!"
"And this is the number you have taken from my account details which you have there ?"
" O.K. so you called and asked for me by name and I confirmed that it was me ?"
" Yes that's right "
"And asked if I was OK. ?
"And now I have to prove who I am to you before you can go ahead and try to sell me what exactly ?"
" I'm afraid I can't discuss that with you unless I can confirm who I'm talking to.........."
You couldn't make this up if you tried.......
Monday, 21 July 2014
let me be as Christ to you;
pray that I may have the grace to
let you be my servant too.
and companions on the road;
we are here to help each other
walk the mile and bear the load.
in the night-time of your fear;
I will hold my hand out to you,
speak the peace you long to hear.
when you laugh I’ll laugh with you;
I will share your joy and sorrow
till we’ve seen this journey through.
we shall find such harmony,
born of all we’ve known together
of Christ’s love and agony.
let me be as Christ to you;
pray that I may have the grace to
let you be my servant too.
I certainly didn't feel like this on Saturday when I was trying to sort out my bank account. My bank has been "acquired" by another bank which, over the past few weeks, has sent me scholes of instructions on what would happen and the procedure for accessing on-line banking.
So, I tried to follow the instructions on Friday, managed to lock myself out of the card reader, tried to seek advice over the "phone, and after wading through all the "options" found out I wasn't registered for telephone banking. Tell me something that I don't know you twerp. I eventually ran out of patients and very nearly life!
Saturday morning, bright and breezy I woke up determined to crack the problem. I started the process at 9 am and by lunch time I was bemused, befuddled and bewildered having spoken to several delightful young call centre staff who "weren't trained" to help me with my problem. Eventually I was told that my call was being transferred to someone that could help.
"type in your 4 digit pin, etc. etc." I tried to stop her at this stage to say that not only was my pin 5 digits long, but by this stage I was actually locked out of everything. She was obviously reading from a script and couldn't deviate long enough to listen to me.
Much to my embarrassment I ended up shouting at her. She paused, "No 4 digit pin?" "No" "But you were sent one" "I wasn't" "Are you sure?" "YES!" "Well in that case we will have to send you another one, it will take about 5 days to reach you" by this time I was totally deflated "OK" "Someone will call you to discuss this further because we can't unlock your card reader from here, you will have to go to the nearest branch of this bank and follow the instructions on the screen". And, I must admit, it was not my finest hour when I slammed the 'phone down yelling "WHATEVER!"
I then waited for the 'phone call. None came. Wait a minute, let's think about this. "Calm down" I told myself "check through all the stuff they sent". And do you know what, there it was, the 4 digit pin! Drat! The 5 digit pin was for telephone banking! WHAT?!
Now the problem became different - if I didn't hurry they would cancel my newly found pin, so I dashed to the bank, unlocked my card reader, hurried home and hey presto, I now have on-line access again. Whew. All's right with the world again.
Technology makes life so much easier doesn't it?
Saturday, 21 June 2014
A: Heart only good for so many beats, and that it... Don't waste on exercise. Everything wear out eventually. Speeding up heart not make you live longer; it like saying you extend life of car by driving faster. Want to live longer? Take nap.
Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?
A: Oh no. Wine made from fruit. Brandy distilled wine, that mean they take water out of fruity bit so you get even more of goodness that way. Beer also made of grain. Bottom up!
Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?
A: Well, if you have body and you have fat, your ratio one to one. If you have two body, your ratio two to one.
Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
A: Can't think of single one, sorry. My philosophy: No pain...good!
Q: Aren't fried foods bad for you?
A: YOU NOT LISTENING! Food fried in vegetable oil. How getting more vegetable be bad?
Q : Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?
A: Oh no! When you exercise muscle, it get bigger. You should only be doing sit-up if you want bigger stomach.
Q: Is chocolate bad for me?
A: You crazy?!? HEL-LO-O!! Cocoa bean! Another vegetable! It best feel-good food around!
Q: Is swimming good for your figure?
A: If swimming good for figure, explain whale to me.
Q: Is getting in shape important for my lifestyle?
A: Hey! 'Round' is shape!
Well... I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO-HOO, what a ride!!"
For those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.
1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Australians.
2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Australians.
3. The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Australians.
4. The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Australians...
5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Australians.
CONCLUSION: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
Thursday, 12 June 2014
1) The bandage was wound around the wound
Let's face it - English is a crazy language. There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England or French fries in France. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are animal organs. We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites? You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out, and in which an alarm goes off by going on.
Monday, 9 June 2014
To continue, post six and the last of the series. If you have read the previous five posts I have described how I had a “spiritual awakening”, how that affected me and what happened as the result of it.
After the initial impact I had three months of what I can only describe as absolute blissful peace. We still had major emotional and financial problems but nothing seemed to touch me. Could this have been what is known as "Grace of God?” I don’t know, but it felt good.
Unfortunately it didn’t last forever, but by this time I had the means of dealing with my situation. It was, to say the least, a very exciting time with many unexplained things happening, one of which was that Davy and I had become concerned about our very dear friend Steve who was becoming fascinated with some of the fringe "ism" groups. I had “coincidentally” recently bought a book on “cults & isms”. We decided to give this to him and his wife, along with my cherished Bible.
Giving my Bible away was a great wrench for me but we figured that their need was greater than ours. When we arrived home that evening, lo and behold, there was a parcel on our door step. In it was a wedding present from two of the ladies at the church. A Bible! Another "coincidence"!?
The upshot of this is that our friends became Christians soon after attending our wedding at Millmead and Steve then went on to become a great charismatic influencer with a tremendous gift for service.
Fast forward four years. Many, many other unexplainable things happened, however, these stories are not about me and, therefore, not mine to tell. The bottom line is that my time at Millmead was about to come to an end. Davy’s mother was terminally ill with cancer and we decided to move to Lincolnshire so that we could be near her in her final days.
The downside of leaving such an inspirational church is that other churches, particularly the few I tried in rural Lincolnshire, felt like spiritual desserts. I came out feeling worse than when I went in so I spent next 26 years doing my own thing! And, I might add, not very successfully!
A couple of years ago I started getting agitated about this and set off to look for an Alpha Course. Unfortunately I had just missed one, and was introduced to some of the people that had been on it. I asked if there were any “lively” churches in the area and was recommended three, St George’s in Stamford, the Community Church in Peterborough and Holy Trinity in Boston.
I tried St George’s and loved it, but it’s about 30 miles from where I live and felt the need to find a church more local to me so I tried Holy Trinity which is only 10 miles away.
It was Mothering Sunday and as soon as I walked in I felt that I belonged. During the service Simon, the minister, asked the young people to come to the front and collect potted primroses for their mothers. I found this simple act of love profoundly touching and when a young man gave me one too I nearly fell apart! I hadn't expected that. In fact I cried. If the truth be told I’m just an emotion wreck hiding under a gruff exterior, but please keep that to yourself.
The mystery is - why did I start agitating to find a church at that particular time? All I can say is that it’s been a particularly difficult year and I believe that I was guided to solid ground to help me to deal with more of life's "challenges"! J I feel safe now. In the bosom of a caring community, learning, one day at a time, how to live a richly fulfilling spiritual life.
Well, that’s my story from there to here and I must say that, one day at a time, here is good.