Sunday, December 14, 2008

HOAX Alert!! - RE: PLEEEEEEASE READ!!!! it was on the news!

AOL and Microsoft Tracking E-Mail and Paying!!!


This is a really old HOAX!!!

Let us think about this logically.

A, It is basically NOT possible to track email in this way. It could be done by attaching a script to the message, but how they would track it back to you without your HOME ADDRESS being supplied by you I do not know. Also most email systems strip scripts as they are VERY DANGEROUS. NEVER run a program sent to you by anyone, never click on a link in an email. Be wary of any attachments sent to you, especially if you were not expecting them.

B, If you do the maths. You will see that within 7 iterations they would need to pay over £1 million pounds to each person! By 21 iterations you would be paying more than the economy of some small countries!

The main function of this sort of thing is to clog up email systems. It is a kind of manual virus.

Take a look at and you will find reference to this. I know I said don't click on links. So errr… Don't click on it ;)

Sorry to bust ya bubble.

Friday, December 12, 2008


Another message from Paypal, and my response..

Subject Re: FileaComplaintintheEuropeanUnion (Routing Code: C826-L003-T13026-S111-W000000) (KMM29881289I96L0KM) :ppk4

Comments below...

2008/12/12 <>
Dear Cosma,

Thank you for taking the time to contact PayPal with your concerns. My name
is Shicille and I am happy to assist you further.

Could you start by actually READING and UNDERSTANDING My complaint!

I understand that you are having a hard time using you Mobile phone for
security. I apologise for any inconvenience this may have cause you. Allow
me to help and provide you with the best possible solution.

No I am not having a hard time using my phone for security!. Your system is failing to send me the authorization sms!

It is our intention to reply to our customers within 24 hours. However, due
to an increase in email volume, our response time has been delayed and we
are diligently working to reply to each email received. Thank you for your
understanding and patience.

Well you failed on that one!

Please follow the simple step below on how to register your mobile phone
for security.

Here's how to register your mobile phone for Security Key Short Messaging

1. Go to the PayPal website and log in to your account.
2. Click Profile at the top of the page.
3. Click PayPal Security Key in the Account Information column.
4. Select Register and register your mobile phone for security key.
5. Register your mobile number and click Register.

After you register, you need to activate your mobile phone for the security
key. We will send you a Short Messaging Service (SMS) with a code and ask
you to confirm the code.

Why don't you actually READ My Message!!!! I have done this several times and it Always FAILS TO SEND THE SMS!!!

Note: The PayPal Security Key Short Messaging Service is free for a limited
time. Please note that your mobile carrier's standard text messaging
charges will apply. Please check with your mobile carrier for details.

I don't care IF IT WORKS!!!!

Please accept my sincerest apologies for the inconvenience this has caused

Don't apologise! Just fix it!

Should you have additional questions or need help with your PayPal account,
please feel free to email or call our Customer Service Representatives on
08707 307 191.

I spent an hour on the phone to no avail!!!

Thank you for choosing PayPal, we appreciate your business with us.

PayPal European Services
PayPal, an eBay Company

That is all a lie Shicille!! You really do not care about my business.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


End of the Story
For once I nearly gave up on this one.  It was getting tedious, and I did not care that much.  But then Paypal decided to bombard me with a bunch of auto generated emails answering questions I did not ask so I thought I would give it another go.
 Glenn the Vhinz mailed me so I decided to call them again.  1 Hour and 15 minutes this took.  The 1st 7 minutes were doing battle with their auto attendant, which decided to send me 2 more emails that I did not request nor want!  Finally I get through to "Meg"  she proceeds to go down a dead end and does not listen to what I am trying to say to her about my issue.  She spent a great deal of time getting me to re register the phone and the decided it is because my phone does not use WAP 2.0!!  I explained to her that my phone does have WAP 2.0 and that was irrelevant to the conversation, but she would not have it.  Finally I asked to speak to her supervisor.  Along comes "Venessa".
We went through much of the same process I did with Meg, but she finally asked for the model of my mobile (Nokia N95 8Gb).  Venessa went away and checked.  Surprise surprise my phone is compatible with their system!  So what is the problem???  "What carrier are you on?", "T-Mobile", "Ahh! that's the problem".  Apparently T-Mobile in the UK does not work with Paypal text security!!!
OK.  I can live with that, I am not happy about it, but I can live with it.  My question is "Why the bloody hell does it not say that on the website??"  Why does it take 1 and a quarter hours of my time to find out?  Would it kill them to put this up on the web site?
I did point this out to Venessa and also registered a formal complaint with Paypal about their shoddy customer support and poorly trained staff.  I am not holding my breath that they will bother responding to me.
Come on world!  Someone out there must be able to start a viable competitor to this bunch of clowns!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Free Jokes R Us

Hello all,
My Joke Website has had to move so I thought I would get a domain for it to make this less painful next time I have to move it.
Let me introduce you to......  Drum Roll.....
Can I please ask that you click on the odd ad occasionally in order to help me cover the costs.
The site has not changed much, other than I have fixed some broken links, but I shall try and give it a revamp and add some extra material asap.  In the previous location I was very limited with the amount of available space, this has, hopefully now been resolved.  Please mail me directly via the mailing list (as site owner) and let me know if there are still any problems.  Thanks.
Many regards

Monday, December 08, 2008


Paypal want an Opinion!

The nerve of these companies.

1st You make a mistake,

2nd You fail to resolve it

3rd You ask for a pat on the back!

Feel free to click on the link and give an opinion!

Dear Sir,

On 12/05/2008, I spoke to you regarding your PayPal account. As part of PayPal's commitment to excellence, I want to make sure I met your needs in my response. Would you please take a minute to answer a few questions to let me know how I did?

http://<removed as I have already filled it in>

To respond to our survey, please click on the web address above. If that does not work, please cut and paste the entire web address into the address field of our browser.

NOTE: Please respond within five days so that you can provide timely feedback to me. AFTER 5 DAYS, THIS INVITATION WILL EXPIRE.

If you wish to take the survey anonymously, click the link below:

Thank you for your help!

PayPal Customer Support


Unfortunately CRAP! Was not an option!


A response from Glenn at Paypal.

I will not bore you with the ins and out’s. It is just a standard email, that he has taken from a template, asking for all the info I gave to his colleague. Will these companies never learn to write down what is said to them!!!

I reiterated my issues….

Still waiting…..

Friday, December 05, 2008


Here we go again...

Silly me. In an attempt to increase my security when using Paypal I decided to use their SMS to mobile phone service. I went to the web site and registered my mobile phone. I was supposed to then receive an SMS message with a code, that I then enter in to their site. Alas this code did not appear. What did appear was my mobile phone registered 3 time!

So I gave them a call. This is where the fun begins....

After spending a ridiculous amount to time dealing with their Auto attendant (during which time it sent me 2 emails that I did not want) I finally get through to a person. I will cut the story short here by saying that he was not really of much use.

I asked to speak to his supervisor and was put through to Quincy. She tells me that the reason that I had not received the SMS messages was that they had a fault that was effecting SMS's with T-Mobile. I asked why this was not indicted on the website (some kind of service status page) but she could not understand what I was trying to say. We spent some time with her telling me that my phone was only registered once, and me telling her that it was visible 3 times, when I decided to send her a screen shot. (shown for your information).

It clearly shows my number there 3 times. (I have smudged it in the picture).

She seemed to be having some problems receiving it??? Hmmmm... And also could not deal with the idea that I recognize an American accent when I hear one. Somewhere in the vicinity of New York, if I am not mistaken. So she would not confirm that, as she is at least 5 hours behind me, she has most of the day to look at my issue. She also did not seem to have the ability to look at the Internet so I could not give her this address, Although I will send it to her anyway :)

Quincy did promise to email me to let me know when a, the fault was cleared and b, when they had resolved my display issue.

Let's see if the famed American customer service is up to scratch....

The Girls Serenade the NHS

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

My Friend the author!

The second in a series

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The 80's are alive and well...

Message from my friend Iain

I am Jealous!

Hi Cos,

I went to a great concert last night with 3 80's bands playing. It started with Heaven 17, then ABC and finished off with the Human League. The concert was 3 1/2 hours long and they played all their hits. The tour is called the Steel City tour and started in Glasgow last night. Here's a few pictures.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Blackheath Fireworks

Blackheath Fireworks

Monday, October 20, 2008

Wizz Air

The Cash Arrives!

Wonders will never cease!  But why was it such a struggle.

Several months of me chasing.  and it takes a blog to get them to react!

Gone Kiting mad!!

So I decided to get suicidal and bought a traction Kite! Next I will get a board to go with it. One step at a time

Friday, October 10, 2008

And for a change..

Braun Tassimo Machine

Well, it makes a change to be writing something positive about someones customer services.

A couple of weeks ago my Tassimo coffee machine packed up.  We soldiered on for a while making pots of coffee but the strain of making coffee in the morning got to much so I cracked and started to look for some way to get it repaired.

After a long and fruitless search (ok 20 mins) I gave up and looked at the Tassimo website!  All the FAQ's were not a lot of use and so I left a message using their feedback form.  I carried on looking and after some digging I found a phone number.

I called them and a very helpful chap informed me that a, the warranty is 2 years! not 1 :) and b, the nearest repairer was in Southend (I live in London) :(.  He gave me the address and said I could post it:  But I was desperate so, last Saturday, I put it in the car and off I drove.  The repairer was a small Shaver Repair shop (of all things).  I dropped the broken machine off (an incredibly painless process) and with some trepidation departed.  The chap in the shop said it would take at least 2 weeks and I even considered buying another machine as the jitters were setting in.

On the Monday I received a message from Tassimo support asking what the status was and offering to assist to resolve the position!!  Very helpful.

You can imagine my surprise to get home today (Friday) and find a large parcel in my hallway.  I opened it and there was a BRAND NEW Tassimo machine!!  OH JOY!

I just wanted to express my thanks to Braun and the repair shop (Cowans Shaver Centre) for such excellent (and rapid) service.

Wizz Air

Wonders will never cease!

message from Wizz Air

Dear Cosma,

Thank you for your answer. We start the refund procedure with the given bank details, and it takes about 10-14 working days to receive your compensation (683 RON).

Best regards,

<Name withheld until I see the folding!>
Wizz Air Customer Relations Hungary


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

All you need to know about the financial crash

Wizz Air

A Response!!

Well.  Wizz Air have offered a refund as I requested!  I will not hold my breath till it gets here.

But we have progress...

Wizz Air

The Saga Continues..
Finally fed up of waiting I have decided to call them again.

The allegedly head office number turns out to just be a Polish office.  They put the phone down on me when I tried to speak to them but, fortunately, I have Polish colleagues who spoke to them to find out that actually it is just a polish office and they recommended I call the usual, expansive, UK number.

I called it, and guess what!  They put the phone down on me!!!

I am now on hold waiting for <Customer Services Rep> to assist me.  60p a minute and I have been on hold for 5 mins and counting...

The <Customer Services Rep> has come back to me and has assured me that I will be hearing from Wizz Air Customer Relations today.  Apparently he has forwarded it to them.  I do not get this as he was able to find my message very quickly, and I did send it to customer relations so why does he have to forward it to them?

I have replaced his name with "<Customer Services Rep>" as he was helpful and sounded like he wanted to resolve my issue (unlike his 2 colleagues who put the phone down on me).

Apparently they do record calls so I have requested that he goes back and listens to the last call I made to see who it was that put the phone down (I can dream).

He also had internet access and looked at this Blog, so now they have most of the history of this sorry saga.  There have been more calls and emails that I have not recorded here but, strangely enough, I do have a life!

The clock is ticking (again).....

Monday, September 22, 2008

Wizz Air

Head Office Number

I have just called Wizz Air.  They are about as much use as a chocolate fire guard.

Apparently all the managers have gone home and there are only 3 members of staff in the call centre.  She did suggest that I call the airport in Budapest.  Not sure how that would help.

I now have an other email address for them (the third) That I have mailed to.

I also have what is, allegedly, the head office number, 00 48 22 351 94 92 but it is not responding.

I shall try again in the morning, I am not holding my breath.

Wizz Air

Wizz Air Refuses to respond...

An Open Letter to Customer Relations..

A few weeks ago I sent you an email containing a copy of my Father in laws death certificate, as you requested, all I have received back is your standard auto response.

Are you planning on dealing with this issue?

Just so you know I am Blogging this issue at

It has already been seen and commented on by people in the same position as myself.

Can you please react before I start to take this further and take legal advice.

Cosma Papouis
Cosma Papouis Technology Services

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wizz Air

Budget Airlines.  Are they worth the aggro?

In an attempt to save some money we booked my in-laws on Wizz Air for their recent trip to the UK.  Other people we know have used them and assured us that they were OK.

Regrettably my father in law was taken ill shortly before the trip to the UK.  This is where the troubles began.

My wife flew out to Romania (extremely short notice flight arranged painlessly by BA) to see her father.  Regrettably he passed away.

We decided that her mother would come to the UK anyway and my wife would fly with her using her fathers ticket.  We called Wizz Air to make the necessary arrangements and were told that, regardless of the situation, they could not help and she would have to purchase another ticket.  I would have to email their customer relations office to get a refund of the unused ticket.  I tried calling and emailing their customer relations, but all I got was a standard response saying that they would get back to me eventually.

After some arguing, on the ticket line, we managed to get them to change a ticket to my wife's name so she could come home on it, but only after we paid £80.  Again we were told to contact customer relations.

Over the past month I have emailed them, I have tried to call them, I have even tried to Fax them, but with no response.

Finally today I get through to someone who tells me that the supervisor is not about and so she cannot check the other email address, but if I email to a new address they may be able to help me.

I will be sending a copy of the death certificate to them with details of what I want.  I am not holding my breath.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Remi Rides Again!

Remi Rides Again!
Originally uploaded by CosmaP

Thursday, August 07, 2008

RE: Thanks!

I also would like to add my thanks to Ian and everyone else. I can’t remember the last time I hung out with a bunch of reprobates like you lot and it was a lot of fun J

Can I also ask that if someone has the pic of me with my mouth around a young ladies nipple, that you not upload it to facebook as if the missus finds it, my nuts won’t be any use to me ever again! lol


Kevina sends her love

Thanks to Ian

Actually, on a more serious note....

Thanks to Ian for all his efforts in organizing a great weekend, from the bit's of paper with all the phone numbers on to providing us with a good laugh (by getting kicked in the nadgers) it all worked brilliantly.

Have a great wedding Kev and sorry I can't be there :(


If anyone was looking after Kevin's best interests I want them lined up against the wall so we can paintball them. I thought the idea was to do as much damage as possible in the time allowed! Actually it appears that the best man was the only one that was damaged when he received a clout in the family jewels. Photographic evidence available at and on facebook.

Oh, and there is also a video at

2008/8/7 Kevin Maude

I want to say thank you for making the effort to come and give me an awesome send-off for my stag-do. I had a phenomenal weekend and I hope that you all enjoyed it too. I felt very humbled to have so many of my friends their and to have so many of you safeguarding my best interest.

Even when you were shooting me I could feel the love. Speaking of which, Kevenna says "hello!"

For those of you that will be at the wedding, I look forward to seeing you next week. For those that can't take care till I see you next and stay safe.

Loads of love,


What a crock of S(&%$

Holiday Scam
I have just had a phone call from this crowd  Apparently I have just won a competition which gives me the "opportunity"  to buy a holiday from them at a discount price.  Lucky me!
The person on the phone started by telling me that I had completed a competition entry form, this is not true.  When I pointed this out to her she said that I had used my MasterCard or Visa card, but I have not given them permission to use my details!  She was not sure which card I had used and tried to get info from me.  When I refused to give her any info and tried to get some info from her she put the phone down.
I have called their UK contact number and, surprise, surprise, it redirects to an overflowing mailbox in the US.
They must be desperate for business if they have to make these sort of calls to the UK to try and fleece people.  I really hope the credit crunch hits them and takes them out.  Problem is that they are probably totally fake and are just praying on peoples gullibility and greed, I doubt if there is a real holiday company behind this.  You pays your money and you gets bugger all.
Over and out.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

American Idiot

They sure can produce a better class of idiot!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Virgin media

Hello Dear Reader,

Are we sitting comfortably?

Good, Then I shall begin....

Once upon a time there was a company that pretended to offer cable TV service. This company was called NTL.

Unfortunately it was crap!

But one great day they were bought by the Great Richard of the Branson and all the people rejoiced as Virgin was known to give great customer service. And thus was born...




Unfortunately they too proved to be crap. Here is an email I have just sent them.....

Where to start? Here we go................

1, I am paying £31.50 for my service. I have a phone line that I do not want or use and do not have broadband. If I drop the phone line my cost goes up!!

If I get the broadband My cost stays the same, but I have to agree to a 12 month contract. This is madness. Why can I not just have TV service and pay just for that?

2, Your auto attendant is awful!

3, People on your help desk just do not listen to what is being said to them!

I thought things would get better when you became Virgin, but Nothing has changed!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Skater Boy

Skater Boy
Originally uploaded by CosmaP
So it seemed like a good idea to go Skating.....

This is the first time in about 15 years that I have been on skates and so I was quite proud that I did not kill myself or doing any serious damage.

This photo was taken at the beginning of the evening. The river path is about the worst surface I have ever skated on, but needs must. We went all the way from Surrey Queys to Spice Island (or whatever it is called now) and back. Next time we will have to find some decent roads.

Yes I know they are not blades. I just can't come to terms with those silly things and so I will stick to what I know!

Onwards and upwards.

Natal Curry Contest

Note: Please take time to read this slowly.    
For those of you who have lived in Natal, you know how typical this is.
They actually have a Curry Cook-off about June/July.
It takes up a major portion of a parking lot at the Royal Show in PMB.
Judge #3 was an inexperienced food critic named Frank, who was visiting from America.
Frank: "Recently, I was honoured to be selected as a judge at a Curry Cook-off. The original person called in sick at the last moment and I happened to be standing there at the judge's table asking for directions to the Beer Garden when the call came in. I was assured by the other two judges (Natal Indians) that the curry wouldn't be all that spicy and besides, they told me I could have free beer during the tasting, so I accepted".
Here are the scorecard notes from the event:
Judge # 1              A little too heavy on the tomato. Amusing kick.
Judge # 2             Nice smooth tomato flavour. Very mild.
Judge # 3 (Frank)     Holy shit, what the hell is this stuff? You could remove dried paint from your driveway. Took me two beers to put the flames out. I hope that's the worst one. These people are crazy.
Judge # 1    Smoky, with a hint of chicken. Slight chilli tang.
Judge # 2    Exciting BBQ flavour - needs more peppers to be taken seriously.
Judge # 3    Keep this out of the reach of children. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to taste besides pain. I had to wave off two people who wanted to give me the Heimlich manoeuvre! They had to rush in more beer when they saw the look on my face.
Judge # 1    Excellent firehouse curry. Great kick.
Judge # 2    A bit salty, good use of chilli peppers.
Judge # 3    Call 911. I've located a uranium pill. My nose feels like I have been snorting Drain Cleaner. Everyone knows the routine by now. Get me more beer before I ignite. Barmaid pounded me on the back, now my backbone is in the front part of my chest. I'm getting pissed from all the beer.
Judge # 1    Black bean curry with almost no spice. Disappointing.
Judge # 2    Hint of lime in the black beans. Good side dish for fish or other mild foods, not much of a curry.
Judge # 3    I felt something scraping across my tongue, but was unable to taste it. Is it possible to burn out taste buds? Shareen, the beer maid, was standing behind me with fresh refills. That 200kg woman is starting to look HOT... just like this nuclear waste I'm eating! Is chilli an aphrodisiac?
Judge # 1    Meaty, strong curry. Cayenne peppers freshly ground, adding considerable kick. Very impressive.
Judge # 2    Average beef curry, could use more tomato. Must admit the chilli peppers make a strong statement.
Judge # 3    My ears are ringing, sweat is pouring off my forehead and I can no longer focus my eyes. I farted and four people behind me needed paramedics. The contestant seemed offended when I told her that her chilli had given me brain damage. Shareen saved my tongue from bleeding by pouring beer directly on it from the pitcher. I wonder if I'm burning my lips off. It really pisses me off that the other judges asked me to stop screaming. Screw them.
Judge # 1    Thin yet bold vegetarian variety curry. Good balance of spices and peppers.
Judge # 2    The best yet. Aggressive use of peppers, onions, and garlic. Superb.
Judge # 3    My intestines are now a straight pipe filled with gaseous, sulphuric flames. I am definitely going to shit myself if I fart and I'm worried it will eat through the chair. No one seems inclined to stand behind me except that Shareen. Can't feel my lips anymore. I need to wipe my arse with a snow cone ice-cream.
Judge # 1    A mediocre curry with too much reliance on canned peppers.
Judge # 2    Ho hum, tastes as if the chef literally threw in a can of chilli peppers at the last moment. (I should take note at this stage that I am worried about Judge # 3. He appears to be in a bit of distress as he is cursing uncontrollably).
Judge # 3    You could put a grenade in my mouth, pull the pin, and I wouldn't feel a thing. I've lost sight in one eye, and the world sounds like it is made of rushing water. My shirt is covered with curry which slid unnoticed out of my mouth. My pants are full of lava to match my shirt. At least, during the autopsy, they'll know what killed me. I've decided to stop breathing - it's too painful. Screw it; I'm not getting any oxygen anyway. If I need air I'll just suck it in through the 4-inch hole in my stomach.
Judge # 1    The perfect ending. This is a nice blend curry. Not too bold but spicy enough to declare its existence.
Judge # 2    This final entry is a good, balanced curry. Neither mild nor hot. Sorry to see that most of it was lost when Judge #3 farted, passed out, fell over and pulled the curry pot down on top of himself. Not sure if he's going to make it. Poor man, wonder how he'd have reacted to really hot curry?
Judge # 3  No Report. 

Thursday, May 15, 2008


So the Cheque has arrived

Got a cheque from NatWest, and have banked it. A bird in the hand and all that jazz. I still have not decided if I am going to report them to the information commissioner. I want to as I just do not like their attitude and they have never convinced me that they give a shit about my documents.

Or I guess I could call Watchdog. Is it worth the aggravation? Probably, just need to make the time.

Not sure what this will do. Just playing

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


NatWest has issued me with their "Final Response"

Basically it says "Tough Luck, we have lost your stuff and you have to live with that!"

I have spoken to the Financial Ombudsman and it appears that they do not think there is much they can do unless I have documentary evidence of financial loss due to the banks actions, this I do not have, apart from my time.

I have also spoken to the Information Commissioners office. It appears that NatWest have a duty of care to my information (I believe that is rule 7) and it does not look like they have been taking any care, as they have lost it twice! I will have to ponder weather it is worth the agro to pursue this. I do have a month to make my mind up.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


A reply, at last...
Well I finally, after sending another email, have a reply from Elisabeth Mann.
Basically they are saying "like it or lump it".  I have turned down the £250 so they are calling my bluff to see if I will go to the banking Ombudsman.
The fact is that they have wasted a lot of my time, have lost my documents and have failed to give me a reasonable explanation or even an apology!  For the sake of £250 I think I will call their bluff and take it to the Ombudsman.  This should be interesting.

Greenwich Council

Bins Removed!
Well After much aggravation, phone calls and gnashing of teeth they have finally removed the bins, The local paper were interested in doing a story, but they wanted me to dump the rubbish in front of the council offices, I guess that would have been a story, but I was just interested in having the bins cleared.
We now understand the new "system" let's hope all stays well....
The End??

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Greenwich Council

Greenwich's new waste disposal Cockup - 4 Weeks without a garbage collection

Letter to local paper


Am I the only one that is suffering because of Greenwich councils messed up "new" garbage collection system?

For 4 weeks now they have failed to pick our bin up. I believe that it is because the bin is "contaminated", if that is the case they are supposed to put a notice through my door or put a sticker on the bin. This has not been done.

I have been on the phone every day since last Tuesday trying to get them to collect the bin. I am willing to say we may have messed up, but there is no way forward other than them taking away and us getting it right in the future.

I have been keeping track of the events (most of them) here

I refuse to go through the bin and sort the rubbish as it is now 4 weeks old and that would be unhygienic. I am tempted to deposit the whole bin on their doorstep!

Greenwich Council

Lost for words.......

After all the promises and assurances they still have not picked up the BIN!!!

They are telling me it WILL get done. For some reason I do not believe them.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Greenwich Council

A Call Back...
What a shocker!  I have been called back by Celia Johnson.  Poor lady sounded somewhat beleaguered.  I guess she is having to take all the flack for the rubbish rubbish service we have.   She has promised a special pickup today so we can go forward with a clean slate, so to speak.
Again I have no choice but to wait and see....
Seems to be the story of my life.


So i called Elisabeth to find out what her reaction to my last email was.  Clearly I have shocked her as she has decided to go away for a week.  I, again, requested that the branch manager from Eastbourne contact me.  and Guess what??  He did!!
I repeated the whole sorry saga again and he has said he will look into it.  I remain to be convinced.

Greenwich Council

Another week Begins...
Having had no joy over the weekend I am on the phone again.
1st called the "Help" desk.  As usual everybody is in a meeting and all they would do is take my details.
2nd, Called the Chief exec's office.  Spoke to lady who is Mary Ney's PA.  She wanted to put me thought to Celia Johnson, who is supposed to be dealing with these issues (They have so many issues that they have to have a specific named person to deal with them).  I have been promised she will call me today.
What a complete shower they are.  We had a working waste disposal system in place and in an attempt to "improve" it, they have messed the whole thing up.
And London is to host the world for the Olympics!  ho ho bloody ho!

Friday, March 07, 2008


FAO: Elisabeth Mann

Dear Elisabeth,

I actually feel quite insulted by your offer. £250 is approximately 3 hours of my time. I have spent more than 3 hours trying to deal with this.

You have still failed to answer some basic questions.

1, I came to the Eastbourne Branch and filled in some forms and gave some one some ID. This has all vanished. How?
2, I filled in some more forms (as did my sister and mother) and gave you copies of my ID. This was lost. How?
3, I filled in some more forms (as did my sister and mother) and gave you copies of my ID. It transpires that we were sent all the wrong forms and I am not on the account correctly! Why?
4, I have requested that the manager from the Eastbourne branch call me to discuss this. You are not sure if he will, why is that?

What is with the adverts "There is another way" It is just a cynical advertising ploy! How are NatWest different to any other bank? I am still dealing with a call center.

Additionally to this it took you from January 18th to get back to me following our last call.

Greenwich Council

Three weeks without a garbage collection!

Some background....

A short while ago Greenwich Council changed the waste disposal system. We used to have a simple system that any fool (me??) could understand. Rubbish went in to the bin (in the house) and was then transferred to the bin outside the house. Recycling went in to the recycling bin. Two bins, Two purposes, no problem.


Recycling goes in to the Recycling bin.. Great, I understand that... Nappy's go in to Orange nappy sacks.. Hmmm.. OK, but where are my nappy sacks? I ordered them quite a while ago... A month to be precise! Then these bags get put on top of the other bins, Oooohhh... that will be smelly in the summer. OK, I can deal with that. Garden waste goes in to the other bin (green top), OK, I can deal with that. Food waste goes in to the green top bin, still OK.... What about the other general waste? Put it in black black bags, but not just any old black bag, a "compostable" one, fine and?? put it in the green top bin? Nope. Just pile it up with the nappy bags on the floor!

So outside my house I have...

A Full blue topped bin for Recycling... OK
A Slightly full green topped bin for Food and garden... OK
A pile of orange bags full off smelly nappy's... NOT OK!
A pile of black bags full of... The rest... NOT OK!

The only real difference here is that the general rubbish is moved out to black bags and the nappy's to orange ones, the green bin will be empty most of the time as I do not do much gardening and we do not have that much food waste.

Would it not have made more sense to have the garden waste in the bags and the general waste and nappy's in the bin, away from fox's and, when it comes, heat.

The Problem

For the last 3 weeks they have not collected my rubbish, I have called repeatedly and been told they would do a missed collection, but it has never happened. We do not throw that much away, but the bin is now full! They have not deemed to tell us why they will not collect it. I suspect that this is because of the nappies, but no one will confirm this. It would be nice if they would send us the orange sacks so we can conform to the grand plan.

The thing is that they will not pick the bin up.
I will not climb into it to resort it.

So we have an impasse....

Right this minute I feel like taking the bin to Greenwich Councils offices and depositing the contents on their doorstep!

I have spoken to several Greenwich residents about this, some of them work at the council, would you believe, and they all agree that this is a silly system and whoever thought of it needs a slap with a wet kipper. Apparently they had a very high volume of calls initially, this has now dropped to a constant rumble, so I cannot be the only one suffering from this foul-up.

At last, after me calling them 10 million times I have had a call back from the directors office and a very nice lady, who's name I will not mention as it is not her fault, has said she will see what she can do. It is a bit late in the day for this (literally), but I have been trying all day...


Called Elisabeth!!!!

Finally got through to her.
Apparently her number has changed to 020 8236 8119.

The bottom line is that although NatWest have dropped the ball repeatedly on this, it still falls to me to fill in all the bloody forms again! from scratch and go to the bank and give them my identity information AGAIN! so they can loose it AGAIN!

They are going to offer me some "compensation" let's see if this is anywhere near the cost of the amount of time I have wasted on this.

I am furious at their incompetence and inability to show some basic customer service and rectify the issue.

I will be considering where to take this from here, I may have the bit between my teeth will push this all the way. Then there is always TV, Newspapers.

She has offered to give me the information for the banking ombudsman...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Called Elisabeth!!!!

No call since the last time, which was so long ago that I forget so I called her.
She is not there, but I have left a message for her to call me.
Apparently she gets in at 10:00 am.  We shall see.
This is getting really tedious.  The Ads say "there is another way"  Yes there is, it's called another bank!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Bathomatic, The Automated Bathtub Filler, Hits ISE

A unique integrated device that Connects to AMX and Crestron control systems for automatic bathtub filling.

read more | digg story

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Integrated Systems Europe

The final day!   It has been a great show so far.


We have made many contacts and have many promises.  Now we have to see if they will turn to something real.


We have a couple of journalists threatening to come and put us in some magazines…  Oh the tension!  I will have to go and make myself look beautiful (this could take some time). 


Thanks to AMX for the party last night.


OK, so it is 8:30 and I am not up to speed yet.  I am going for a coffee and may add some more after normality has been returned.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Integrated Systems Europe

So here we are.  Second day of the show.  Lots of great feedback and interest in the product.


There seems to be a lot of potential in Russian and all of the former Soviet countries.  We have had lots of interest from Hungary, Poland, and all points east.   Actually we have also had interest from Kuwait and some Far Eastern locations.  Very exotic, I shall look forward to going there to “Supervise” the initial installations.


These two pictures show our arrival at Rai in Amsterdam and the stand before the mayhem began.


I will post more pictures to Flickr when I get to a better internet connection.


Friday, January 18, 2008


Finally get hold of Elisabeth!!!!

Well I waited till 14:30 for a call and did not get one, so I called her.  Found here on the 1st try!
Apparently, though I am on the account I am down as an addition not a regular user!  No cheque book, card or access (unless I go in to the branch in Eastbourne).  This is useless.
I cannot even get Internet Access!
Elisabeth is going to call the branch to see what is going on.
I did mention that I have not been sent back the identification papers that I explicitly requested back.  She will investigate.
I also mentioned I am BLogging all this, she was not interested.
I have an email address I can use.  It is not hers, but it goes in to a pool and I may get a response in 24 hours!  Welcome to the dark ages.
In case you are interested...

Thursday, January 17, 2008


I am on the Account.  Nice of them to tell me! NOT!!!!

My sister went to the branch yesterday, apparently I am on the account, but no one has deemed to let me know or to give me any details of how I can access it!
Call to Jackie to try and put this to bed
  • Start at 10:40  Surprise Surprise I am on hold..
  • Apparently she is expecting my call.  I have given her the account details and she will call me back.
  • 15:00  A call back.  Apparently I am only allowed to talk to Elisabeth Mann.  020 8236 8140.
  • I left a message for her to call me tomorrow.  I will not hold my breath.