Must be, going to the bank is far easier, simpler, more welcoming and better service.
Went to visit the welfare agency in Hornby today to get a new Community Card, no big deal, how wrong can one be?
Found park and began to walk towards the door, interrupting a male wearing hi viz, playing with his device, who had to leave his place in the sun to guard the doors that do not self open. Twenty questions:
1 Why no mask? “I am exempt”, do you have that with you? “no”, grunt acknowledgement.
2 do you have any symptoms? “no” (well a little white lie I did have my normal breathing impediment, sort of a constant companion really)
3 Another mumbled unintelligible question through the mask, ignored.
4 by now two with slightly rising agitation levels and a slower question Have you had Covid, “No not this week”.
5 Have you been in the company of anyone you know to have had flu like symptoms in the last two weeks ? “no”
6 Have you been in any large gatherings lately? “no”.
7 do you have an appointment? “No”.
8. What is the reason for you to come here today? now getting to a definite level orange, but suppressed the urgent desire to give him my second serve, prudence prevailed, “My Gold Card needs replacement”.
A bit of a hint of further delay avoided, quite sensibly and with what could be described as a sightly insolent bit of body language, a lunge across my person to insert the code to open the door, and entry to my employees workplace accomplished.
Another two security males inside the doors, a silent wave to a seat to await service.
The time and motion apparent was mind boggling with most persons visible not even carrying the old long held belief that a person with a piece of paper to hand must be doing something productive, with one solitary
worke drone out of around ten persons visible plus the three security, at reception speaking with a “client” clearly closing in on some arbitrary income bar to maintaining his benefit, that took an interminable time to bring to a close and the eventual departure saw moi summoned with a casual wave to approach.
I presented a Community services card that had expired some time ago thinking a few keystrokes on a keyboard with the details on that card and hey presto a new card on its way, how wrong can one be, take two, a scuffle in a drawer for a multi page application form to be filled out or taken away, filled out, then returned demanding many entries and requests for documentation in support, such as Drivers Licence, Passport, Arms Licence, power bill ( do people still have those delivered), Bank Statement, tensions rising, anger management processes deployed.
Decision made for a strategic withdrawal to rearm and recover my desire to live, while a few shreds of sanity and self respect remained intact.
One large office, lots of computers and devices apparent, no ringing phones, no one above amble, many fixed in situ, and another tree dies just to get an updated bit of plastic that does not even have a chip or a readable stripe?
Definite resemblance to a Brigadoon still shaking off the century asleep.
Think on reflection I will just keep the old card that has only been challenged and found out of time once in the months it has been expired and use the Arms licence as ID, that bit of plastic never needs anything like the scrutiny of a Drivers Licence, funny that.
Next time I might take one of my exclusive deer antler adorned walking sticks with a coat of white paint, and shuffle in to another office wearing my Biden aviator sunnies and see how someone really needing assistance gets treated. Leave my hearing aids at home as well. maybe pass on the Arms licence though, might just be an IQ above a waistline measurement present.
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