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3:49pm on Wednesday, 23rd March, 2016:

Long, Drawn-Out


I was in Colchester today, so decided I'd take back the mobile phone I'd been given in error. I was in the store for 45 minutes before someone figured out how to do it. Their system thought the phone they'd sent me was the one I was using, so in order to take it back they had to persuade it that the phone I actually am using is the right one. There are security systems in place around this, because otherwise people in shops could steal returned phones; unfortunately, while these work fine when the phones being returned are properly registered, they don't work when the phones are registered wrongly. There's one person in head office with the authority to override the security systems and change the system's record of my phone's ID, so that's why it took so long.

I didn't get a receipt, because the people in the store were themselves asking for a receipt, so scared were they that someone in head office would think they'd stolen the phone I was returning. I think there's enough of an audit trail that if I do get the bailiffs round demanding that I return the phone, I can prove that I've already returned it.

Interestingly, as all records to my original phone had been lost, if I'd kept quiet about it I would have had a live but untraceable phone. I could have used it for all manner of nefarious purposes. Just as well I'm honest.

Oh, and if you're wondering, the reason I was in Colchester was to have a check-up to make sure that the statins I take aren't killing me faster than the cholestrol build-up I'd get if I weren't taking them. All went fine until the blood test, which is always tricky with me because my body doesn't like to bleed, and as soon as there's the slightest puncture of a vein my blood pressure drops and I start feeling faint and queasy. Thus, I was able to watch the nurse jabbing in my arm trying to find a vein and to report when she finally hit one because WOO-I-may-need-to-lie-down. She didn't manage to get any blood, though, because my veins went into lockdown.

Eventually, she had to call in the receptionist as she's specially trained to use a butterfly syringe, whatever one of those is. It's weird that the receptionist is a qualified phlobotomist and the nurse isn't, but she slowly got the two test tubes of blood out so I'm not complaining.

It's also weird that it's harder to give back a phone than give two test-tubes full of blood.

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Copyright © 2016 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).