Saturday, 30 December 2006

Criminy Crumbs!

I've got a comment! And it's not abusive! Whoo hoo! Thank you.

My God, what a time!

The job interview went badly after I told them I couldn't get out of bed for less that £15,500. Before that they were very enthusiastic even after I showed up a half hour late.

I got the 510 not the 501 and ended up near Perton not Tettenhall Wood, and on my way there I must have asked the only Glaswegian in a twenty mile radius if she knew where the place was, and, and, and......

I've got another job interview for a bunch in Birmingham on January 9th. That would be my first ever office job if I got that. Ooooh the excitement.

I've also received a letter from AXA. A couple of years ago, I got suckered into a Save from Pay scheme for £50 a month. The payments have been deducted even from my December pay.

I received a letter today stating that they have received nothing since August. I owe them £200 and please fill in the Direct Debit form to ensure I don't miss any more payments. I'm going to have to talk to the Finance Section about that one. And AXA about not paying any more.

Christmas was abysmal.

I went down to London to find strange brown creatures running around in the carpets upstairs. These must be the "maggots" that the home help told Dad about one day.

Stinky Old Bat is stinkier, older and battier that ever. Dad is worse than ever and still trying to get a loft conversion done. He's staggering around even when he's sober.

The residual sight in his blinded eye is interfering with the already poor sight in his "good" eye. So he got an eyepatch from one of his drinking cronies and wears that when he's out and about. The sight of him tripping over his own feet as he makes his way down the pavement is just pitiful. He doesn't look after himself at all and looks like he's one step away from a park bench.

He arranged with the drinking buddy of an old dead drinking buddy to meet in The Kerryman pub in Digbeth on Wednesday when we travelled up. So instead of getting to Wolverhampton we got off at Birmingham. And then waited over an hour for the mate of a dead mate to show up.

He'd mistaken Dad for someone else and didn't make an effort to come over from Bordesley Green thinking that he knew and didn't like the guy he was going to meet. He went home after ripping his trousers, changed and headed our way after I left messages for him.

He is a retired 73 year old. He has a house that's paid for, a respectable public service pension and spends much of his time battling gout, diabetes and hangovers. Soon after he arrived they switched from pints of bitter to double measures of spirits (Jameson's for him and the wife, dark rum and black for Dad).

6 pints, 3 double rum and blacks and 2 single measures later, Dad couldn't walk at all. The girl behind the bar used a two way radio to call a taxi and we ended up at New Street Station.

At the beginning of the evening, the plan was get to New Street, get a train and get a taxi from Wolverhampton station - one bright idea was to get me to go ahead with the cases and Dad would follow me home later!

Dad couldn't walk and had to be led out of the taxi by his new best friend. He and his wife stayed in the taxi and went home to Bordesley Green.

I was stuck at a station about 20 miles from where I wanted to be with two heavy cases (Dad brought his tools) and a falling down drunk who refused to accept that he was drunk and blamed his legs and his balance for the fact that he was hanging on to a vending machine to stay upright. Brilliant.

One call to Yellow Pages and a taxi firm later, we were getting into a people carrier. Dad (who by now stopped making sense) insisted that the southbound M5 was the way to get to Wolverhampton (which is north of Birmingham) and accused the driver (the fuckin' Italian) of cheating us. The guy was Asian right down to his little Afghani style pie crust hat.

When we got to the front door Dad was still arguing with the driver and refusing to pay the £30 I'd agreed with the cab receptionist when I 'phoned.

It's been awful since. We've spent a day putting up two and a half sheets of plasterboard on the middle bedroom ceiling. We're going to spend the rest of today doing the rest of it. Then he's going to go home
tomorrow and kid himself that he's done a good job and start on the loft conversion again after he's gone
shopping on Tuesday.

I keep telling him to go see a doctor and to get his eyes checked out again but it's like talking to a bloody wall.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Bah! Humbug!

Saturday, 9 December 2006

Missed me?

I'm back!

Apparently, there have been regular readers from within the Big E. At least one for about a year.

Well, you could have told me. That's what the comments sections are for. I appreciate feedback you know.

My GP is referring patients to charities as Psychological Services are closed to new patients. I'm not covered by Gamblers Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous, Relate or Cruse. Wolverhampton doesn't get many higher functioning depressives with obsessive compulsive thought disorders and severe drug allergies.

Even with the depression, the RSI, the phobias, the OCD, the allergies and the dyslexia, I have been turned down by the DWP for Disability Living Allowance as I'm not disabled enough. Right.

At my quarterly psychiatric appointment, after I had told yet another doctor my tale of woe, she told me that there were a number of drugs I could take. I wasn't just limited to one sub standard antidepressant...

I interrupted her and told her that I was the one allergic to Prozac.

She flipped through the notes and then quietened down. Ah yes, she said. Well, the Mental Health Services are a 'phone call away (during office hours). Thanks, I said. I'll bear that in mind.

This is the mental health trust that was so good at its job that a care worker didn't realise for a year that a dangerous schizophrenic was her responsibility until a week before he killed his elderly next door neighbour. I'm in good hands. You can tell.

At my last EAP counselling session, my counsellor and I "wrapped up". He's been very supportive over the time that I've known him and he gave me a little list of websites I can look up if I ever earn enough money to pay for private counselling sessions.

As I guess I'm not sick enough for the NHS, I suspect that seeing someone privately will be the only way to go. Until I earn enough to pay £45 - £50 per session, I'm on my own.

Anyway, the day I left the Big E, I dug out a copy of my cv and went to the copy shop to get extra copies. I then went around every employment agency I thought could help find me a job.

I got a job three days later doing data entry for a market research company. £5.95 per hour, but it ekes the savings out for a while. By the end of each day, my mouse clicking finger would take hours to warm up afterwards.

They liked me so much, that I got another job with them stuffing high value envelopes. I might get a bit more work from them next week. Oh goody.

5000 envelopes each filled with 3 books of 1st class stamps. That's £48,000 worth of stamps. I really want to do that again. Not.

I've had an interview with a local supermarket about night work which finishes 6am Christmas Eve.

I've got an interview next Monday for a Chromatographer position at a local company which investigates food content and I'm still in the running for a couple of jobs I've applied for at a local water supply company, a local bus company and a world renowned aluminium production conglomerate.

I've not been idle. The way the break with the Big E works out, I should be able to eke my savings out across 5 or 6 months before things get desperate. Hopefully, I should be able to find a job before then. Hopefully.