Well at least that's what I am telling myself. Its just teething troubles that has resulted in the mi-fi from EE giving me grief, the scooter hoist not working, the scooter having a dicky switch, and now the phone giving up on me.
My phone problems started because I find whilst I am driving I see lots of interesting things, but then as the day goes on I see lots more interesting things, then add to that problem or two, and by the time I am parked up and can make a note of anything I have forgotten more than half of what I did see. So I am keen to get something that I can dictate into whilst driving, which will then transfer the notes to a screen.
I found a computer programme online which would do this but needed a new phone for the job. After many hours researching and talking to Orange – who are my current phone providers and EE who are the mi-fi providers it looked like the Samsung Galaxy would be good, and I could combine the two services as EE and Orange are now one, so only one company to worry about. Because I was on the road I arranged for the new phone to be sent to Signature ready for when I got back there.
All fine except as soon as I saw the phone I didn't like it at all, plus it was far too big for me to comfortably use and put in my pocket. So I contacted them to send it back. Again all fine except they sent the return envelope to my home address, well they sent two actually - and then promptly barred calls from my existing phone. Now, there is no way to contact Orange or EE other than by phone, and I didn’t have one. I could have called into an Orange shop, but how many of those have carparks big enough for Thebus, and don't forget the scooter doesn’t work.
Fortunately they hadn’t cut off the mi-fi, so at least I could contact people by email, and as I am a member of several forums I asked if anyone had suggestions as to how I might get this sorted, and someone suggested Twitter.
I am a total 'Social Media' virgin, but I thought I would try and give it a go, and with a bit of online support, encouragement and general egging on, I managed to Tweet Orange, and a few hours later they tweeted back. They needed me to DM them, whatever that was.
It turned out I needed to Direct Mail them, so having had some help to sort that out I did, and after a day or so of tweets and general faffing about the phone sprang back to life. Okay - I could only phone Orange but at least that was a start. A few more hours on the phone with them and it more or less works as it did before they messed with it.
The upshot of all this is that I shall make sure I never have all my services with one provider again!
I am buying my own unlocked phone, and have sourced a separate pay as you go chip from another company, and will keep the current phone I have as well, so although it was horrible for a few days it may have all worked out for the best. What I have discovered is that having some sort of phone connection is going to be pretty well essential for me.
I am also getting an ipad which I can use for when Strict Lady gets her knickers in a twist. She is okay on long distance routes, but when it gets down to the nitty-gritty of delivering me and Thebus to our final destination she fails in the last half a mile or so. Which is no fun when you have something as big as Thebus to turn round, especially when you are as useless as I am at doing it.
So after that tale of woe, something nicer to report. Phoebe seems to have relaxed into all of this travelling malarky a bit. Her appetite is quite good, though with me taking the opportunity to feed her whenever possible she turns her nose up at what other dogs would regard as treats. I don't mind as long as she is eating well. I find with such a big dog as Phoebe if they go off their food they loose condition very quickly and then have nothing in reserve if any illness strikes. But everything seems much better with her, and since our extended stay at Croft Ends there is far more tail wagging and Phoebe-like behaviour.
We took a small turn round the grounds at Wood End, but I couldn't make it as far as the dog walk so she had to stay on her lead, but took a good interest in what was going on around her and is loosing some of her hesitancy and gaining a bit more confidence. And this is her next day at Dalraddy
Phoebe taking a bit more of an interest in her surroundings at Dalraddy