This last month has been one of setbacks on all technical fronts – which has been something of a nightmare. I am now going to sound like a grumpy old person – but I do not think this is just because of my age! For a start I bank with TSB – and for ten days, along with thousands of others, I was quite unable to get online, owing to the fact that their new IT system didn’t work. And now we have another major IT failure, this time in the NHS with the breast cancer scandal. Anything to do with computers is Greek to me – so when I got locked out of my website page I had to turn to an expert and even then it took some time and a lot of patience on his part to sort out the problem. I wouldn’t mind having problems if I understood them and knew how to deal with them. But this will never happen so I just have to be patient and rely on the kindness of friends who come to my assistance.

While I am having a general grumble, I might as well chime in with some of the other things that frustrate me in my present existence. One of my main gripes is getting on the phone for assistance with a problem – and then being given a list of options. If none of the options quite answers the problem you have to go for the nearest one and then hang on while some ghastly music is played out loudly. These are always long calls so When the music comes to a stop, it either starts all over again, or something worse comes on. You are finally answered and then told you are with the wrong person and you wait, with more loud music, to be put through to the right person – if you are lucky. The complications can drag on until you finally give up.
One of the worst offenders with music is my local GP surgery. They play a very slow version of the slow movement of the Moonlight Sonata – poor Beethoven must be turning in his grave. This is interspersed with messages about collecting prescriptions or finding out blood test results. Every time there is a break the Moonlight Sonata goes back to the beginning – so you hear the turgid first six bars over and over again until you feel you are going insane. This is not good for patients who are calling in and who are always being told to avoid stress!

So many things that happen in our every day life now cause irritation or worse. Another offender is the disembodied voices that come from nowhere when you are working on your laptop – Alexa, Cortana, or whatever else they are called. Then there are all those large unwanted messages that suddenly appear on your screen, blotting out the work you need to be getting on with. Occasionally they will tell you that you have won a prize – of something that you really don’t want at all. It all adds to the daily frustrations. Not to mention the bizarre weather, rude drivers – and general aches and pains!

Grumble over! At least my pots of herbs are doing splendidly.