Petty problems

It’s been a week of petty problems. I’m not going to grumble – obviously not, I’m British, after all – but I wish they would stop happening.

On Monday I went to the dentist. He’s a great dentist, and I quite enjoy the entertaining conversation between him and his assistant, but this time he wasn’t happy with his first attempt at a small replacement filling, so he did it again. I was in the chair for an hour and a half. In the afternoon I had an Artlift supervision. These are good meetings, intended to help the Artlift artists cope with any problems they are having. I don’t have any Artlift problems at the moment, but it’s always refreshing to get together with the other artists, so I didn’t mind going – except that I was the only one there. The facilitator and I waited for an hour and a half, trying to find things to talk about, before we found that definitely nobody else was coming – a complete waste of time. Rehearsal in the evening was terrific, though – we had some of the sounds for the first time, and they were great. The Bloke has made a magic candle for us, and that worked a treat too.

Tuesday was a prep day, lots of emails, and to Gloucester for an Artlift fundraising meeting. I got the Poetry on Loan minutes sent out, and wrote the blurb for the Wyrd Sisters flyer.

On Wednesday I finished all the prep for a training session I’m running this Wednesday – first one I’ve done that relies on tech stuff to go right. Hmm. I had a good session with my Artlift group and had a swim – first time for ages. In the evening I did an online data protection course (I mean, really; it was all pretty obvious, but I had to do it), and started the application for a funding grant towards the rehearsal venue costs for Wyrd Sisters. But – they had sent me some information that was either misleading or wrong, and definitely confusing, so I couldn’t get very far.

I phoned the funding people on Wednesday and they were extremely helpful, and I got the application finished on Friday.

On Thursday afternoon I had a session with the school in Birmingham, taking 24 very lively kids out for a walk to take photographs – but one of the cameras was stuck in burst mode, and I couldn’t take my attention off the kids for long enough to get it sorted. There were enough cameras to go round, though, so it was ok. And in the evening – hooray! – I caught up with all the emails, and copied all the photos (552 of them) onto my computer for selection. The Son was home for a while in the evening – always good fun. And I wrote three poems.

Friday was an early start for my very last WW1 workshop, with a lovely school in Rugby; they were great! As my good friend Jonny says about WW1 workshops – we will remember them. I did my weekly finances and more prep, and made a cake.

On Saturday I did a lot of work for the Birmingham school thing, and sent the new poems to the people who needed them, and started a period of frustration trying to transfer money from my bank account – my bank account, that is – to somewhere else. It really shouldn’t be as difficult as it is. I think banks and building societies should be prosecuted for calling it online banking; it has taken a long time on the phone to get it all sorted.

I planned to do lots more work on the Birmingham school photos on Sunday, but everything ground to a halt because the recycling bin on my little notebook computer was full. It runs on Windows 10, which I loathe with a  passion, because everything is so difficult. Could I find my recycle bin to empty it? Could I hell. I tried all the solutions suggested on t’Internet, and in the end the only way out was to set it up so that the desktop was in XP format. Then it was easy to empty the recycle bin, and all was well, apart from the waste of a couple of hours.

However, on Sunday afternoon I went to the British Aerospace museum in Filton, to see Concorde. I’ve never seen it close up before. It is an object of startling beauty, and restored my faith in humanity – if we can make things like this, we can do anything…

except deliver a parcel to the right address. Apparently Yodel delivered my parcel (an expensive Christmas present) at 11:25 on Saturday to my house. I was at home at the time; nobody came; no parcel was delivered – and the tracking records show a completely different post code. So now, whose responsibility is it – the people who sent it, or DHL who got it to this country, or Yodel? Will I ever find out? And more to the point, will I ever get my parcel delivered?

But still – Concorde was beautiful, and it was Remembrance Sunday yesterday, and my problems are all very, very petty ones.

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