I had a wonderful time on the telephone after returning from the shops. In case it’s not obvious, I’m being sarcastic.

It happens all the time when I have to ring BT – fortunately not something I’ve had to do very often – and I’m very confused why. I ring up with a problem and the person on the other end (generally in India) asks what the problem is. I explain, cheerfully enough and give as much detail as I can – having worked on a Help Desk I realise how important detail can be.

Today the person was trying to be helpful but couldn’t solve any of my problems (no TV, no broadband) and put me onto a Scottish woman. This seems to always happen as well. From India to Scotland. Sometimes the accent is just as hard to understand but not this time.

The Scottish lady was very helpful but, again, I had to tell her everything that had happened. This information included everything from when the engineer visited on Monday, connecting us up to the new Infinity broadband (it keeps reminding me of the Infinite Improbability Drive and I like to think, when it works, that I’ll be able to view every webpage at the same time whenever I go online).

As I say, she was quite helpful but only to the extent that she had to talk to lots of other people with no concrete results. Eventually she put me on to the most useless person I think I’ve ever had the misfortune of dealing with. When he asked me what the problem was I have to admit that I was bit annoyed. I asked him why I had to repeat everything for the third time. He said he had to check what the problem was. I gritted my teeth and repeated everything again.

And then came the clincher. This useless guy asked me if I had a pen and then gave me a number to write down. I thought it was going to be some sort of reference number but it turned out to be the phone number I’d originally dialled to place the problem call. My annoyance bubbled over a bit at this stage.

I asked him why I had to ring the same number I’d already rung in order to go through the whole ridiculous farce again. He continued to insist I had to call the number and choose option…it was at this stage that I became somewhat unreasonable. I managed to convince him that I’d already called the number (I’m sure he didn’t believe me) and that there was no way I was hanging up and calling again. I’d already committed nearly two hours to the problem and didn’t feel I should commit another two.

Mr Useless went silent and then asked me to hold while he spoke to someone. I sat fuming and listening to Edvard Grieg’s Morning for the umpteenth time. And then another chap came on the line and I prepared to tell my story again.

It was relief that this final chap didn’t ask and simply asked me to carry out a few tasks on the hub and the modem. None of these worked and he told me he’d run a few tests on the line. Sensibly he asked me to hang up and he’d call back after the tests had run their course. He rang back 20 minutes later to say the problem was external to the house and he’d be running more tests and getting an engineer to fix it. I thanked him and hung up.

I then saddled up the dogs and went to the park for a lovely walk.

Later in the day I was happily ploughing the backyard when BT rang back just to let me know that our broadband still wasn’t working – I assured her I knew – but that I shouldn’t call them again as they were working on it. She told me that someone would call me before 9am on Wednesday to let me know what was happening. And that was how it was left.

We were still without broadband or TV at 10pm. Why, oh why, did I change to a faster yet non-existent broadband connection? Clearly I’m an idiot.

I heard a wonderful update this afternoon on the rapture that didn’t happen last Saturday. Apparently it did happen but on a spiritual plane. The physical rapture will be happening on October 21. That doesn’t help the people who sold up everything and quit their jobs.

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