Thursday 10 November 2016

Not a great day

Today wasn't a great day.

FIrst, I had a call from TalkTalk (TT); my last invoice wasn't paid.

We investigated. The bank wouldn't honour the Direct Debit (DD), and they said that it was because the amount was greater than the funds in the account. But we run a "sweeper" account, and we have on occasion paid out more than in the account in the past; for example to HMRC. And because it's a "sweeper", there's funds in the account that is swept to/from, so the bank isn't taking any risk in honouring the DD. After a lot more talk to the bank, they retreated to a different reason; Talktalk used a DD number that hadn't been approved.


I've been paying TT by direct debit for a couple of decades now, because they were billing me for the DSL lines. But it seems that for the new 100 mbit line, they made up a new DD number and tried to bill that. When it didn't work, they didn't bother to tell me. And the bank didn't bother to tell me of a failed attempt to do a DD. So I explained to the bank that it would have been nice if they'd told me about what they presumably considered to be a fraudulent attempt to charge a DD against my account. And they told me that they don't do that. Which means that a random criminal can do DDs on you and you'll never know that there's any fraud being attempted. So this all came as a bit of a surprise.

After about two hours of phoning TT and the bank, we came up with a solution; I paid TT by credit card (which will cost them more than a DD would, but they seemed to be happy) and TT will set up a DD for the future.

Job done.

The next thing was a visit to the dentist. Last time I went, to patch up a chipped tooth (chipped on a plum stone, would you believe) the dentist took four x-rays of my teeth (top and bottom, left and right) and on examining them, she recommended two fillings and an extraction.

Fillings aren't too bad, but an extraction? Ugh!

Not as bad as it sounds. The extraction is for a fragment of tooth that was just floating free of the jaw. The first filling wasn't too bad, except she used the vibrating drill as well as the water jet drill, and that really isn't nice. The second filling needed local anasthetic, and because my jaw was totally numb, I hardly felt a thing (more vibrating drill). And then she did the extraction, using a tool that looked like a tiny spoon, followed by tweezers, and it was a small but very jagged piece of tooth that wasn't doing anything useful but could have caused a problem one day. So then I chomped on a wadding until the bleeding stopped, and I should be good by the time I have supper. She's a good dentist. And they're taking on more patients, if you live anywhere near Amersham, I can recommend Hill Avenue Dental.

The third thing was a penalty notice for ladysolly parking in the Chalfont and Latimer tube station car park. Fortunately, she had kept the receipt that the machine gives you. Actually, there's no luck involved; it's pretty obvious that it's a good idea to get and keep that receipt. So I took a picture of the receipt, logged in to the NCP web site and put in an appeal against the fine, on the grounds that the parking fee had been paid, and we had proof via the receipt. I don't know how they made that cockup. Computers, eh?

So, as I said, not a great day, but I do feel that in all three situations, I came out on top.
And tomorrow is my birthday!