It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post, and you may be wondering why. You may not even have given it a second thought, but that’s another subject for another post. So why no post? Well, at the beginning of the year, I promised myself that my blog was going to contain less ranting. I feel that my last couple of missives were successful in the ‘less ranting’ format, and therein lies the problem. If I’m not having a rant, then what do I have to say?
Mrs H has been having a rare old time looking at her personal finances. Three weeks ago, she got a letter about some share scheme she had paid into that was about to mature. It wasn’t a large amount, but it got her thinking about other schemes she had paid over the years. One of the things that she wondered about was the pension contributions she had made whilst working in the Health service. After a lot of digging around and a very stressful few hours on the phone and internet, it seems that she is entitled to a small monthly sum and a small lump sum. Rant Alert…rant alert … the amount of phone calls and the stress involved in trying to get this small amount of due money would have driven me over the edge … register here … activate this … create this password here … login here … wrong password … wrong login … wrong activation code … etc. In all honesty, I think I would have given in. I would have given in with quite a few swear words and a lot of alcohol intake. But at the end of the day she got it sorted. Well sorted for that particular job anyway. I suspect there is more to come!
I was now going to to talk about today. Or to be more specific, what today is! But in the spirit of ‘less ranting’ I have taken the decision to not mention St Valentines Day. Or, what it has become known as Valentines Day/Night/Week. I’m struggling here, not to get worked up about how we in Britain celebrate the execution of a Roman Bishop, by giving our nearest and dearest flowers, wine and chocolates! It is even more poignant this year, as the aforementioned day falls on the same day as Ash Wednesday (or the start of lent for those who didn’t know.) I wonder if, when ‘Brexit’ happens, that these old ‘European’ festivals will be abolished? One can only hope.
Well that’s it for tonight. Hope you liked this post, and you know what I’d like you to do if you did. Any comments are welcomed.
So, today is the day we are getting our new bathroom. R*** went gone off on respite at 9 am, and the fitters arrived a few minutes later. A combination of good planning and timing I think. The estimate is 7 to 10 working days, but from what I can see of the bathroom, 7 days is probably the more nearer timescale.
It comes though, at a time when lots of things seem to be going wrong. Eldest son, is splitting up from his girlfriend, which is a big issue in itself, but that’s compounded by the fact that they are buying a house together. He is on quite a low salary, but feels as we do that he needs to keep the house. Selling it would not realise the finance needed to pay off the mortgage, and would leave him in a financial hole that would be difficult to climb out of. K*** and her sister are with him this morning, talking to a mortgage adviser about his options. It has been a very stressful few days. He was hoping that it could be resolved quite amicably, but that does not seem to be happening. Then to cap it all, whilst he was taking his neighbours to the airport on Saturday, he managed to get himself a speeding ticket. That old adage of “It never rains, but it pours” seems more truer by the day.
One of the things that annoys me on forums and similar websites, is some peoples lack of gratefulness. I mean when you help someone, surely the proper thing to do is at least acknowledge the helper if not thank them. Recently on one such forum, a member was having a problem. Another member had looked at it and could not help much. I felt I knew what the problem was and thought I knew how to solve it. I posted my views, feeling rather pleased with myself. The member that tried to help gave a virtual ‘pat on the back’ and told me that it looked like I had solved it. The original poster …nothing. I’ve just answered another post for another member. See what happens this time
It was a quite stressful day today. It’s the end of the financial year, so certain reports have to be done. As usual, the reports did not do what the ‘finance whizz kids’ wanted them to do. It’s a bit annoying. Seven years ago, the software house told us that they would write any report we wanted, they just need to know what was wanted. The ‘whizz kids’ did nothing! As a consequence, I had to write the reports. The thing is, I am not an expert (more an expert now than I was) so the reports I write are very basic. At the end of the day, it all got sorted. It gets a bit heated between me and the finance manager. It’s not anger, more frustration, not helped by a certain line manager (soon to be ex) who seems to like to wind things up a bit. However, at the end of the day, it all got sorted, and the finance manager and me are still friends. That has got to say something!! We can have four or five hours at each other’s throats, and then when it’s all done, we are still mates.
I told my line manager (SM) that I had got a new position. He arrived at around half nine, and it took him until half ten, before he spoke to me. Then it was a beckoning wave and a “when you’ve had your chat, can I have a word?” Told him I was waiting to see my new boss, and then I would come and see him. His face was a picture. As I have mentioned, I did not get the job that ‘they’ wanted me to get. So he was not very pleased that, I was not going to be at his beck and call. My colleague, D*** was most supportive, and I felt he was quite pleased for me. Some of the others though, were still talking about ‘what are we going to do ……’ and ‘who will do this ….’ To be frank, and to misquote, “Frankly my dears, I don’t give a shit (damn)”
That tickly cough I mentioned, turned into a full blown chesty experience. Not a good start to the day at all. Then to cap it all, one of my colleagues (termed used loosely) came into work, and glibly announced that he had a chest infection. No thanks mate, I already have my own (or someone’s !!)
I had to do a finance training course today. Those guys have as many weird and wonderful words and acronyms, as IT people have. At least I can understand the IT stuff. What is ‘negative credit’ actually ? Still it was a useful course, and the trainer was interesting. It should have lasted 3 hours, but we got it down to just under 2, so not bad. Testing time will be later this week, when I have to put what I learned into practice.
Day off tomorrow (Tuesday). Mrs H has a hospital appointment, so we will have the rest of the day in York. Hope the weather picks up a little as the forecast is not too good.
Eldest had an interview today for a part-time job. He has not worked in well over year, and finances have hit rock bottom. Well they hit rock bottom quite a while ago, and have not got any better. He did a couple of days last weekend, but it is not enough. Unfortunately, every student is looking for part-time work at the moment, so our fingers are crossed for him.
Well, we did not go to the quiz after all. The weather wasn’t too good, and I was a bit tired. There are many nights when I just cannot be bothered, and just want to sit and read, or listen to some music.
The IT stuff got sorted. The folders that the staff needed access to are only available to staff who have a certain application, and although all the staff can see the folders, only certain ones can do anything with them. I have no idea why they do it that way.
It was Mrs H’s birthday on Sunday. Eldest came over for the weekend, and they both went to the local music event. It is usually me that goes with S****, but we all thought it would be nice if him and K*** went. I think she enjoyed it. You never can tell, especially when she says things like ‘It was different’ and ‘I did not know what to expect’.
A busy day coming up on Wednesday. It is the end of the financial year and I have a number of reports to run. We did a test run last week, and the Finance Manager (did I really capitalise that) seemed happy with them. Fingers crossed things stay that way.
Youngest is supposed to be going to the dental hospital on Thursday. Trouble is he has started with a cold, and I don’t think they will let him have the treatment if he has a cold. Still, it will be another day off, and I think I will have earned it.
A very busy day today. With it being the 1st day of the month, I had some finance reports to do. It is quite ridiculous really. The team I create the reports for, have access to the data, and the reporting tools, but claim to ‘not have the skills’ to manipulate that data into a readable form. It’s just a spreadsheet with, with a lookup table !!! Nothing difficult. Still, it keeps me in a job. It makes me laugh sometimes. We get new finance people in, and I think they are going to be able to do some of my work, and they never can. So the work stays with me.
Our Call Centre Management system was back up and running again today. It appears, that the PC we were running the system on, was not up to the job. Couple that with the problems they had when the contractor updated the server, meant we needed to upgrade our PC. Now with our IT department, upgrade, means money for IT. However, the guy that came down to sort the problem said he was not interested in cost, but only interested in fixing the problem. I must keep this chaps number. Is this boring ??????
I had a bit of a headache this morning. I did not bother with coffee when I got in last night, and that is always fatal, after a few drinks. I am of the opinion, that coffee seems to absorb some of the alcohol, and stops me dehydrating. Well that’s my theory. It’s true though, if I don’t have a cup of coffee, before I go to bed, I end up with a hangover the next day.
S**** has gone back to his flat this afternoon. Mrs H was very upset, which of course made him upset. They are both worried about his bad back, but I think he was glad to get back. We have just tried contact him over the internet, but failed. We did get through on Skype, sort of, but the both video and audio quality was vey poor and broken up. We then tried messenger and could not even connect with the video that way. Then he seemed to go offline. Hi mum vas vey disappointed. Oh well better luck next time. I suppose it could be the weather.
I’m back to work tomorrow. I think I could be quite busy. A couple of finance reports to do in Excel, and D*** is on flexi, so I’ll have the downloads to do first.
I have a Outlook 2007 tutorial on my lap-top, so I think I will print it out tomorrow. It should, along with the reference card help me get used to my new email/contact manager. Touchwood, all the office software seems to be working as it should now. I still have a problem with the bluetooth, and I don’t seem to be able to synch my PDA, but that probably just needs tweaking, and it not such a problem really. If the worst comes to it, I’ll uninstall it and change the USB port that the adapter is in. That often makes a difference.