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About 6 months ago I decided to go ‘great’ free. I was having one of my ‘ffs I hate D. Trump’ days after one of his latest vicious bigoted narcissistic misogynistic rants on a video I saw on Facebook (why do I EVEN watch them???) One of his favourite words is ‘great’. So I decided there and then to never again use the word ‘great’ in any written articles, replies or responses to anything anywhere. Since I am a bit of a ‘linguaphile’ anyway, it suits me to try my darndest to find alternative words.

 

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English is such a magical language, it’s expressive, descriptive and manipulative, and by using certain words you can change the whole meaning of something e.g. I will toast my bread. If you do that you are toast! I particularly love/enjoy/like words that have the same spelling but have different meanings – consider the word ‘bow’ – depending on how you use it, it’s spelt the same, but has a different meaning in context of the action, and even the pronunciation changes accordingly:

Can you make a ‘bow’ out of this ribbon?

When you meet the Queen you must ‘bow’.

The front of the boat is the ‘bow’.

An archer shoots an arrow from his ‘bow’.

A whole sentence: When we loosen the bow, the Queen will smash the bottle against the bow of the ship, but remember to bow when she arrives or her archer will shoot you with their bow. hahahaha. I just made that up. I love it. 🙂

We have become incredible lazy when responding to a situation by using the word ‘great’ for just about anything…that’s a great hairdo. Your hair looks great. What a great party. I had a great walk. That was great fun. She’s such a great person. The sea looks great today….etc etc You get the picture. Urgh. Why do we use that simplistic word when we have so many interesting, splendiferous, expressive, descriptive words to use in the English language.

So here’s how we can change that:

That’s a great hairdo. = That’s a really stunning hair style, it suits you.

Your hair looks great. = Your hair is looking lovely today.

What a great party. = What a fantastic party. What an enjoyable party.

I had a great walk. = I had an enjoyable walk. I had an exhilarating walk.

That was great fun. = That was so much fun. That was terrific fun.

She’s such a great person. = She’s an admirable person. She’s so personable.

The sea looks great today = The sea looks beautiful/gorgeous/amazing today.

What a great day. = What a terrific/brilliant/superb day.

And so it goes. Since I made the decision to dispel that awful word from my vocabulary, when I’m replying to something on facebook or making a comment I try to find suitable words that are more descriptive, more expressive.Funny-Quotes-English-Language-1 - Mr Tumblr

When I write my blogs, I avoid the word great altogether. While writing this blog I did a google search ‘words to use rather than great’ and look at this ‘fun’ ‘funky’ ‘useful’ ‘brilliant’ ‘clever’ ‘interesting’ website I found 😉

111 words to use instead of great’ https://www.grammarcheck.net/synonyms-great/

I have managed very successfully to avoid using the word except now and then when I accidentally vocalise the word without thinking. Down with great I say….

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15/03/2017 UPDATE!!!! The Government have done a big u-turn and WILL NOT BE HIKING THE N.I. ON THE 4.8MILLION SELF-EMPLOYED OF THE U.K. Bloody marvellous!! 🙂 🙂

Subsequent to the current Chancellor’s ‘spring budget’ I, along with millions of other self-employed people was dismayed (to say the least) at the increase in NI for the self-employed, 1%…doesn’t sound like much. Except when, as a self-employed person, trying to build a business, generate an income, and having to save for any annual leave you may wish to take, any sick leave you may need, not claiming benefits, and you’re already struggling to make ends meet, that little 1% can/could make all the difference between actually making any money or not, and to quite simply….in many instances just surviving!

I’m more than happy to pay my taxes and I realise the NI is vital to fund our national services like the NHS and to provide a pension pot (not that I can depend on that to survive in my old age). So when I saw the increase I was like ” urgh bugger, another increase, but hey ho, it’s not really that much and I’ll probably have to work an extra 10 days p.a. to cover the increase”. Peeved, yes! Unable to do much about it, no! So well fine then.

Then I happened to watch the speech Theresa May gave about said increase…and was dismayed to realise that once again this was a move to protect big business and tax smaller businesses (and more importantly in this instance; the self-employed) who don’t have the same Government allowable tax-avoiding loopholes and hand-outs that big businesses have the benefit of. That’s my understanding.

“The Prime Minister also said the shift towards self-employment was “eroding the tax base” and making it harder to pay for public services “on which ordinary working families depend”. – try closing the bloody loopholes that allow companies like Facebook, and Amazon, Starbucks and Google et al to avoid paying their fair share of tax on the profits GENERATED IN THE U.K. Then we will have more of a tax base!!!  2.5 million self-employed people is a drop in the ocean. (Apparently its 4.8million)

Consider this for 2016:

There were 31.84 million people in work, 37,000 more than for July to September 2016 and 302,000 more than for a year earlier.

There were 23.29 million people working full-time, 218,000 more than for a year earlier. There were 8.55 million people working part-time, 84,000 more than for a year earlier.

The employment rate (the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work) was 74.6%, the highest since comparable records began in 1971.

So how is it that a mere 2.5 million (4.8million) self-employed people are eroding the tax base?

Of course millions of people around the country were just as upset as I, as well as which her MPs were apparently pretty pissed too! (see their subsequent about-turn aka a Political u-turn). But what our PM and Chancellor are forgetting is that the reason the number of self-employed is rising is because those big businesses she wishes to protect have a bad habit of going out of business and leaving people jobless. So instead of signing on to the Benefits system, they’re taking the plunge and starting up their own businesses….in other words they’re being innovative instead of dependent. You’d think this would be encouraged! Innovation is what drives business and the economy after all.

And then!!!! I saw a post on Facebook that one of my ‘friends’ had left!! And my blood-pressure went through the roof!

Why are peeps moaning so much about this TINY national insurance rise for the self employed in the Budget yesterday? If you are self employed and can’t make an extra £300 a year then really you should go back to being an employee“. What.The.Merry.Fuck!??? Is he serious? Does he not realise just how difficult it can be to generate an extra £300…which by the way is not JUST £300 but substantially more when you consider that by generating an extra £300 in your business you also pay more tax, have to attend more networking events, incur extra costs for travel, clothes, advertising/promotional material etc etc. So I replied that ‘I disagree’.

And then I set out why I disagreed!

I’m self-employed. If I work for an agency as an employee I earn less. If I want to earn an extra £300 a year I have to sacrifice what employees take for granted: weekends…ergo I have to work 25 days a month rather than 21…which means I don’t have those 8 days a month called weekends.

Also small businesses (mostly self-employed) face stiff competition from big companies who can cut prices due to tax loopholes that self-employed small businesses don’t have. Besides that, it’s not like big businesses are standing at their doors shouting “we have loads of vacancies, come on in so we can employ you”. Many of the self-employed are people who provide essential services. Many self-employed are stay at home Mums who are trying to make ends meet in a tough environment. They start a small business; ergo self-employed because it’s too expensive for childcare…and why WOULDN’T they want to stay at home with their children?
So…in my opinion ….It’s arrogant to make a sweeping statement of the like you just have. My daughter is self-employed. She works in a very tough environment where people want what she does for FREE. She goes over and above for her clients, sometime making only £30 profit and has to constantly look for new clients due to the fact that other self-employed businesses are also struggling and push prices down, or use interns to manage what needs skilled knowledge…because it’s FREE.
I don’t get any tax breaks. If I work for an agency I earn less. If I work for a bigly company like BHS I’ll be employed and get screwed over by the owners to whom I’ve paid my pension for decades so he can buy £10million boats and live the champagne lifestyle and then when it suits him fuck off without looking back.
So no, it’s not as simple as JUST looking for a job.
Actually the government are fcking idiots. They should be ENCOURAGING people who are at home to be generating an income rather than claiming BENEFITS who the employed bitch about all the time. How do you think Britain got the nom-de-plume BENEFITS BRITAIN? I think it stinks, many self-employed people are innovators through necessity and we NEED innovators rather than just a bunch of sheep who depend on other people to be innovative, start a company and employ other people so that they can pay them shit wages, claim tax loopholes and live the champagne life-style.” End of rant…or so I thought!!! Actually I could have said a lot more….I bit my tongue

And then!!! Some fuckwot who thinks he knows more about my life than I do leaves this comment on the thread of my reply:

“So many victim mentalities… reality is yours to create folks”.

My reply: “MENtality. Hardly victims. Rather, very tightly squeezed“.

And then he comes back at me with: “It’s still a victim mentality if something external of your own being is limiting you.
Have people created a different result? Yes. Therefore you can… you can’t change the tax you can change what you do, so change what you do, don’t moan about something out of your control.
If you’ve taken offence, good, it means its true

Now, firstly I read that as a challenge ‘If you’ve taken offence……’ And suggesting that I’m in victim mode!!! Red flag to a bull!!! (after I am a Taurean!!) LOL

My reply:
T.S., get back up your own arse. Seriously. That’s such a lot of PD bullshit. My job is not limiting me. I provide a vital service. I happen to love my job. Caring for elderly people unable to care for themselves. My beef is with the government penalising self-employed people who have the audacity to be self-employed and not working for a company. That’s pretty much what Theresa May said….in so many words.
If you take offence…then it’s true, you’re too far up your own arse.”

 

Then some other twit (I’ll refer to her as BG) replied: “Sounds like it’s time to increase your prices, Cindy!

Uhmm, really? And you know what I do for a living then, do you? So I replied:  “I can’t increase my prices B.G.!!! I work as a Carer for the elderly. Caring for the old people that need my services due to the fact their families can’t/won’t/don’t want to care for them. My rate on an hourly basis is less than the minimum wage. My clients and their families bitch about how EXPENSIVE I am. My rate is set by the agency who farm me out to said elderly people whose families don’t look after. I pay my own tax. I save for my own pension. I don’t get tax breaks. If I want to earn more I have to work more days or take on clients with alzheimers or dementia or challenging behaviour. In my line of work I’ve been attacked with a walking stick, sworn at, peed and pooped on, had sarcastic family members berating me, clients treating me like a servant. If I want to continue in this line of work I have to smile sweetly and take the abuse. So no, I can’t JUST increase my prices”.

By this point my blood-pressure was sky high and my mouth was heading fast towards the potty!! I love that American expression ‘potty-mouth’. So in order to save my health, I removed myself from the conversation. It raged on with some people really upset by the insults the ’employed’ / ‘arrogant know alls’ levied at the self-employed who were labelled as ‘victims’ because they were upset by the increase.

As one lass put it, she already struggles in her line of work because by pursuing her passion (which the same PD fuckwits suggest we SHOULD be doing) the companies she gets her business from are, of course, only interested in their bottom line and keeping their shareholders happy with big dividends, and therefor knock her price down. So how many more days, weeks and months of the year should she work in order to just magically generate an extra £300 p.a. The same goes for my daughter. It’s unbelievable just how many people expect her to provide them with a service for practically free and complain like heck that her prices are too high! Trust me they’re not!  These same people are totally amazed when she says no, she can’t provide what is a valuable service for FREE. ffs.

Now for the sceptics who may be reading this…..yes, it’s only £0.82p per day!!! If you work 365 days a year! But since it’s virtually impossible to work 365 days a year and not crash due to ill health brought on by over extending yourself (unless you’re a mother) then that little sum increases.

So reduce that by 105 = the weekends that the ’employed’ get without losing income, and you’re down to 260 days which = £1.15 per day.

Then take off the Bank Holidays = 8 and now you’re down to 252 working days and up to £1.19 per day.

Now take off the 28 days mandatory annual leave days an employed person is entitled to and not expected to lose income for and you’re down to 224 days and up to £1.34 per day.

And now for the fun stuff….Add to that the extra costs involved to generate the extra £300 and it goes up even more, then add to that the extra regular tax you have to pay on the newly generated £300 and voila…surprise surprise, it’s no longer £1.34 per day but goes up and up and up depending on your overall costs for phone calls, networking, travel costs, stationery, phone calls, advertising, making/producing/providing the extra product/service you’re in business for. Suddenly you’re no longer looking at JUST an extra £300. Try telling your clients you’re increasing your prices because the Government has hit you with an extra £300 per year!!!

I think the thing that annoyed me the most was the simple arrogance of his statement: “If you are self employed and can’t make an extra £300 a year then really you should go back to being an employee.

What an incredibly thoughtless, arrogant and totally lacking in knowledgable comment to make. This is where my potty-mouth wants to go into overdrive and I’m tempted to take Helen Mirren’s advice on using the work fuck more often! LOL

Now before anyone who’s employed gets their knickers in a knot, I have nothing against being ’employed’, I was an ’employee’ for over 30 years! I was also at the mercy of said employers and the very last company I worked for (in South Africa) put themselves into liquidation over a petty argument the 2 principal owners had! This resulted in dozens of people becoming unemployed, one of whom was an elderly gentleman who had a heart-attack from the shock and died within a few weeks. It also meant that a number of companies to whom they owed money didn’t get paid. Much like the BHS scenario.  As an employee you are at the mercy of your employer, many of whom are quite abusive….see the many headlines when people blow the whistle. You are at the mercy of the largesse of your boss when it comes to the annual increase in your salary if you’re lucky enough to even get an increase (not that the self-employed even have a faint smidgen of this luxury). You’re at the mercy of a bully boss. Stuck with hanging out at the same place day after day after week after year, unable to JUST move on if you’re unhappy – that doesn’t reflect well on your CV.  And then the company downsizes, relocates, gets sold, merges with another blah blah blah. I’d much rather be self-employed than depend on a business or corporation for my income.  So when this increase in the NI came through, I accepted it with disappointment and felt it was unfair.

Anyway, why is it that being ’employed’ is still seen as the be all and end all…the achievement of respectability, the golden handshake goal to reach for? It’s amazing how many times people who are employed look down on the self-employed as if they’re failures! Not by any means are they failures. It takes a HUGE amount of courage to branch out and set up a business, to be self-employed. No longer the perceived security of a job where you earn a set income no matter how shit you are at your job (remember all those employment laws that protect you!?), no longer do you have weekends free – clients expect you to be at the end of your phone or computer 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you don’t reply to an email ‘instantly’ at 10pm on a Sunday night they get shirty!! And this is not an imaginary scenario….it’s only too real. As a self-employed person you no longer have the benefit of annual leave and PAID Bank Holidays. Being self-employed has all sorts of ‘perceived’ benefits by the employed who think it’s a long extended holiday. It’s not. It’s tough. People don’t sleep at night for worrying about how to make ends meet. As a self-employed person you are responsible for everything that goes on in a business. Pricing your product to ensure you not only provide a fair price, but that you also make a profit (your salary), marketing said product/service, the accounting, sourcing suppliers, preparing quotes, visiting clients etc etc.

As an employed person you go in to work to do a specific job, in your niche, and the rest of the business magically happens around you. (n.b. I realise this is a variable, and all jobs are different).

  • The self-employed currently pay a lower rate than those in employment
  • The government says this was traditionally down to a lesser entitlement to benefits and pensions, but that these disparities have mostly been removed, so the difference in rates is unfair
  • But critics say it is justified because self-employed people are not entitled to things like paid holiday and sickness leave.

And anyway, as I pointed out to one of the protagonists, it’s not like there are 2.5 million jobs available. In fact many of the apparent job vacancy numbers the Government loves to bandy around are on the very controversial zero hours contracts, and the job market, even for graduates is not flush with vacancies.

An estimated total of 3,694 companies entered insolvency in Q1 2016
A total of 804 companies were subject to a compulsory winding-up order
in Q1 2016
An estimated 2,515 companies entered creditors’ voluntary liquidation in
Q1 2016
There were an estimated 301 administrations in Q1 2016
The estimated liquidation rate in the 12 months ending Q1 2016 was
0.42% of active companies (the report goes on to say) – the lowest level since comparable records began in Q4 1984.
I’m sure anyone who has been at the receiving end of said liquidation feels really comforted that it’s lower!!

Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/519466/Q1_2016_statistics_release_-_web.pdf

So yes, I am, like 2.5 million (4.8million) other self-employed people a tad peeved at the increase in NI. It certainly feels like we’re being penalised for having the temerity to be innovative and trying to earn an income rather than claiming benefits. Which the ’employed’ have much to say about…till it happens to them.

Rant over! Or maybe not 😉

🙂 and yes, as of 15/03/2017 the government have done a u-turn and WILL NOT be increasing the NI for the 4.8 million self-employed citizens of the UK. Excellent!!!

Now all we need is for the major corporations to pull on their big-girl panties, fess up and step up, find their integrity and PAY THEIR FAIR TAXES in the country where they generate the ACTUAL INCOME.

 

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I realise that we all need to buy clothes at some time or another, but I am not a clothes shopper. For me clothes are a means to cover my body. If perchance I look good at the same time, then that’s a bonus.

I’ve never enjoyed shopping for clothes. If I can walk into a store, pick up a top or pair of trousers, pay for them, take them home and wear them – that would be my ideal scenario. But it’s not always that easy. Generally you have to search through the shelves or rails, find something that you actually like, take them to a changing room, take off the current outfit, struggle with loops of ribbon hooked over the hangers to keep the item on the hanger, slip the potential outfit on…only to find that a) it’s too short b) it’s too narrow c) it’s too tight (seldom too loose LOL) or d) I suddenly don’t like the pattern -actually I loathe patterns…especially flowers or stripes. I’m a plain and simple kinda girl….one colour, no patterns, no fancy necklines, 3/4 sleeves, fit across the shoulders blah blah blah

If I go clothes shopping it’s out of desperation…..e.g. tonight I’m going to a friends wedding. There is nothing, and I mean NOTHING in my current ‘wardrobe’ that’s suitable for a wedding. Ironically, a year ago ago I ripped through my suitcases and sent a massive pile of clothes to charity. Yes, you guessed…within the pile were clothes suitable for a winter wedding!!! LOL The story of my life

Other than that, whenever I venture into a store to look at and possibly buy new clothes it’s because whatever I’m wearing either has holes in the seat, the zip has come apart, the hems have fallen out (I never sew up hems), or the seams are slowly coming apart thread by thread.

Mostly I buy my clothes from a charity shop (one of the things I love about the UK are the charity shops). This works so well for me. Walk in, aim for the trousers rack, check for my size, colour black, cost £3 or £5, pay for them, take them home, try them on…..if they fit I keep them, if they don’t I take them back and donate them to charity hahaha. Mostly they fit…occasionally I buy something that looks great, I love it but never get to wear it and a year or 5 later I donate it to charity.

So today, I decided to go shopping. I was in need of new bras anyway, so this seemed like a good time to get the dastardly deed over with. Besides which I had a £10 M&S voucher I wanted to use. Thankfully my daughter elected to come with me or I would have fallen at the first bar. Off we went….

Walk into the store, first rail = perfect top…loved it. Right colour, a few sparklies for the evening, and just perfect…..till I tried it on. Urgh. The shoulders were peaky!!!

Trousers next…grabbed the first pair that weren’t black (just for a change). Except I grabbed a ‘short’ leg. hahahaha OMG my face when I put them on. They fit perfectly round the leg and waist, but sat above my ankles.  Like I said, thankfully my daughter was there. If not, I would have put my clothes back on and left.

But she volunteered to go look for more tops that I could try and long leg trousers. By the time she returned I was chomping at the bit. But I humoured her and tried them on…one by one they went on and came off even quicker…and the ‘no go’ pile grew and grew. But to my surprise there was one top she brought…one with flowers on that I took one look at and mentally said “no way!!!” But I tried it on and hmmmm okay not too bad. On the ‘to buy’ pile.

Then finally, with the little short tops I saw and really liked, in the style I love, 3 different colours, off we went to the tills….and did I have the voucher with me? No! hahaha I remember clearly removing all the receipts from the last few days from my purse and lo and behold the voucher that I have kept safe and sound for the last 4 months was amongst the receipts.

 

shopping for clothes

my final selection

Oh well….another excuse to go shopping #not!!!

Another day then……and don’t get me started about shoes. The only time I buy a new pair is when water starts to seep through the holes in my soles!!

So this is what I’m wearing to the wedding…with the addition of my scarf from Paris and a long black jacket I bought about 11 years ago

shopping for clothes

the final cut….

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I have become so disillusioned with the world of politics after watching the sheer unadulterated ugliness that’s being perpetrated by the American Presidential election. I mean yeah, okay so they throw a bit of mud around to discredit the other candidate, but ohmygosh the levels these people and their followers have sunk to is disgraceful. I thought the UK political scene was ugly….but this stuff coming out of the USA is beyond belief.

It’s a really sad indictment on a country that is meant to be a world-leader when the people who are campaigning to become the next leader behave in such an appalling manner.

I can well understand the ‘not so well educated’ sector of the American public being swayed by vile rhetoric and unadulterated nastiness, but the fact that there are so many more of the ‘upper’ echelons, so to speak, who are doing the same thing, is unbelievable.

Frankly, I think they should just scrap the whole thing, leave Obama as POTUS for another 4 years and try to find better candidates. Yes, I know there are the protagonists who say he, Obama, has failed, and perhaps there are issues in which he didn’t succeed, but there is no doubting that from a moral aspect the man is unimpeachable.  His sense of humour, his fairness and most importantly his overwhelming decency is beyond anyone we have ever learned about or more recently seen in American politics.

Besides which, from what I understand of American politics, even if he wanted to push a Bill through the House, if the Republicans oppose it, then it doesn’t see the light of day. Of course every President makes mistakes, often they are misled, or misinformed by their ‘Advisers’ and make decisions based on what they would expect to be good sound intelligence, but from the stuff I have heard and read about both Clinton and Trump, neither of them are a clean slate with much by the way of morals. And if we have to believe what the media say (trash) about Obama, when you hear what the media have said about the current candidates, then as my Mother would have said “where there is smoke, there’s a fire”.

I understand that what the experts are saying; that Trump is appealing to the anger, the frustration and distrust of Politicians in order to galvanise his followers. More recently I read that he is in fact appealing to the reptilian part of their brains…that figures!!! We are all fed-up with the elite Politicians, but that doesn’t mean we have to elect someone who is so clearly dishonest…..he himself has admitted to Federal Tax Fraud by saying in public that it’s smart to not pay your taxes…..except that the poor suckers who support him, then have to pay more in taxes so the Federal Government can balance their books and so finance his fraud.

And then there are Clinton’s emails. Rightly or wrongly, she had them on her personal server. Of course the burning question is why? Of course, as Secretary of State she should have known better and cannot hide that under a bushel, but the thing that bothers me the most is the fact that she deleted them. If they were as she said, personal and she has nothing to hide, then there really shouldn’t have been an issue.

I was really excited that Hillary Clinton was running again this year, as a woman of course I would be, because we need more women leaders in the world….but I’m sorry, with all the stuff that is coming out about her personally I think she should fade into the night.

As for Trump, please God that he doesn’t win this election. We simply cannot have people of his disposition, dishonesty or temperament in control of the Nuclear button.

Never mind “God Save America” although God knows it needs saving, but “God Help America” they’re going to hell in a bucket….and that bucket is full of holes.

 

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Just over a month ago to my absolute dismay I banged my hard-drive and damaged the reader. Essentially this meant that my computer couldn’t ‘see’ the information. I spoke to my computer person who after looking at the hard-drive said that the data was still there but that it needed an expert to recover it. He did some research and after I had followed up on some of the testimonials I decided to go with a company called R3 (or Tierra) of who do data recovery. They arranged with UPS to pick up the parcel (my hard-drive) and there endeth the tale….or not. UPS have in their own words ‘lost’ the package and after a number of requests to please continue looking for it, have pretty much said “sorry but….”

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I’m sure that this is what UPS would like me to do…….

Now it may not be important to them, and as they say they handle thousands of parcels every day, but this little hard-drive is vitally important to me. It contains the photos of all my adventures, travels and events that I have attended for the last 10 years, as well as so many documents, spreadsheets and downloads and information that I can’t even begin to remember it all.  The hard-drive was my back up because I keep being told to not store everything on my computer and after the last computer crashed and I had to pay to have the data recovered from that, I bought the hard-drive.

However……

I have spent the morning trying to not lose my equilibrium about this, but frankly it is just devastating. The documentation I can live without, it sucks, but cést la vie, I’ll just have to start all over again (like I have decades in front me y’know LOL), But it’s my photos I am most distressed about. 10 years of places that I have been to, events I have attended, special celebrations and things I have done….in essence, all my memories are on that small piece of plastic (can’t rely on my brain anymore).

Fortunately I have downloaded many photos to facebook and have those albums which I am now going to download and I recently made this video, but oh my gosh….

So, here it is….a youtube video of places I have been

I guess I will just have to visit all those places again…… LOL

Meanwhile I am so totally unimpressed with UPS. They really just don’t care, much like most big corporations, they grow to a size where the customer no longer matters.

One of their replies which really is no reply at all:

“UPS has an automated sorting system, and packages are rarely handled by people in transit facilities. Our investigation team has already thoroughly worked on this and were not able to locate it. I apologise about this, but a claim has been issued for this already.” ….. Uhmmm, Okay, so who will benefit from this claim?

or

“Hello Cindy, I’m really sorry if there’s been trouble with your delivery. If the package is considered lost it just need a little attention from the shipper and our investigation team would start working on locating the goods and getting them to you. In some unfortunate situations when the goods cannot be found a claim is issued.” Again…would UPS please come to the party and tell me who is going to benefit from this claim?  I’m guessing it’s not going to be me.

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Yes, I admit it…..I am a full-on, no holds barred, well-versed and dedicated procrastinator!!

Hi, my name is Cindy. I am a procrastinator….. There I’ve said it…..

So you know how it goes (those of you who suffer the same predicament), tomorrow is always another day…I have been meaning to buy a 2nd external hard-drive for months now. My daughter is constantly urging me to do a back-up…in the cloud? Hmmm, not sure I trust ‘the cloud’….what with hackers and all.

So the long and the short of it is, I haven’t yet bought that 2nd hard-drive…always finding something else to do (I don’t buy much stuff these days), my money is rather saved or spent on experiences…like the Herne Bay Airshow, or a visit to Canterbury or paying HMRC Customs a hefty chunk of £££££’s for the privilege of shipping my belongings from SA to the UK and such like. So there is always a reason why I haven’t yet bought one.

And yesterday my pigeons came home to roost.

I dropped my external hard-drive.

IMG-20150214-WA0005

Not Just a Granny having a tantrum!!!

So, initially I went ice-cold. My body went into shock. My mind started whirling. Too terrified too cry, the tears had dried up in horror!!

Then the enormity of what had happened hit me and I made a frantic call to my computer guy…HELP!!!!! Does this mean I’ve lost all my photos ( 10 years worth at least, if not more) all my spreadsheets, documents, downloads, e-books…etc etc…in short…my life is on that little black plastic box meant to be safe and secure and shock-proof in it’s little black shock-proof casing!!! I felt like throwing up!

At my computer man’s suggestion, I ejected the hard-drive (done that…no t-shirt), and try again….nope, the screen is still telling me that I have used 0 data…..oh the sheer horror of seeing a great big (it seems enormous) fat 0 data used staring back at me….especially as I know full well that wasn’t the case (no pun intended) 5 seconds before I dropped it.

Of course, I have subsequently been asked ‘don’t you have a back-up?’ – Uhmm, yes, that was my back-up…… I had recently moved ALL the files and folders from my computer to the hard-drive as the computer is about 4 years old and sends me nasty messages occasionally! – or – Don’t you save your documents etc to ‘the cloud’…again Uhmm no! Buy hey…..I WAS going to be buying a 2nd external hard-drive to save copies of everything on to…next month! I just hadn’t gotten ’roundtoit’ Like that helps now doesn’t it?? Procrastinator!!!

The irony is that I was in the process of copying photos off my phone from a recent trip to Canterbury to celebrate my daughter’s birthday ( I had only got as far as copying them) when I leaned forward to pick up my phone to send my niece (currently a tourist in London) a message…and knocked the bloody hard-drive onto the floor. Not from a very large height either I might add…no more than 3 inches, but it seems it was enough…to render the data to 0!!!

Anyway, an appointment has been made to see my computer guy next month (next week!!) and hopefully he can indeed retrieve the data as he suspects he may well be able to do. If not, then I will have to have it looked at by professionals…and apparently that can cost upward of £700!!! which brings me to my next ‘issue’….the bloody Universe. I swear it’s determined to keep me poor to my dying day. Just when I think I have worked hard enough, taken on extra work to start saving, something crops up to drain my bank account.

So the long and the short of it (and expense) is…..if you too suffer from procrastination…get help!! aldwych-station-tour-2013-16

It’s a bastard, it costs money and it bites you in the bum when you least expect it! Grrrrr.

Oh! and in’future’ I will do today, what needs to be done today….after all, today is yesterday’s tomorrow.  It would do me well to remember that. *squinty eye picture* if I had one. LOL

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Okay so this post was actually started in May 2013!! But I have just not gotten round to posting it….so here goes….

spammers alert!! Right, here’s the thing. I noticed in the last few days (May 2013) that my followers on instagram had increased exponentially. At first I was thrilled and thought it was my scintillating personality :p Then something MichaelQT said yesterday made me take a closer look & hey ho, here we go!!! 99% spammers! urgh. such a waste of time..now I have to sit there and click on each one and report them for spam.

This has all the hallmarks of the Mark Anastasi/Milli Ponce software that they set up.   I went to one of his ‘free’ seminars last year and at first glance the idea seems terrific (won’t go into details, the seminar was 2 days long!) suffice to say they had developed a software system that with a bit of input from you (the people who paid out £20,000 for the software, training on how to set it up & the weekend at his house with a pool in Cyprus), this system would then autofollow people on twitter and repost ‘whatever’ links to a product or ‘whatever’ every time you mention a keyword post like ‘diet’ for instance.  Basically spamming.

Now its seems to have infested instagram! so here is a heads up of what the profile of a spammer looks like. false names, photos that ‘they’ have downloaded off the internet (we were taught it doesn’t have to be real, just so long as it looks real – typical ‘guru’ bullsh!t of the MLM type), thousands of ‘following’ very few ‘followers’ and invariably (on twitter hundreds of posts with nothing but links) and no conversation i.e. bots!. On closer inspection you will also notice that the name is usually a girls and the attendant photo is of a guy! or visa versa!

So although I can’t show you the instagram photos to give you an idea of what these spammer profiles look like, just have a look at their profiles before following back (same as for twitter) and then you can wish that the fleas of a 1,000 camels would infest their ars3s for being such pesky critters, but it won’t help…they are not real…except perhaps you could direct that wish onto the people who set this thing up in the first place. LOL!! So in summary, if you suddenly get hundreds of new followers on twitter and now (bugger it) on instagram…they are most likely fake.

p.s. the names of the people mentioned above are quite likely false as well, coz at the seminar/course we were told to create ourselves a false name for the internet. and (at the time) I had wasted 45 minutes of my precious time reporting spammers and posting this!   In closing, if you wondered where they get the time…we were told that you (the person who signed up for the course) would hire people in the Philippines for a nominal amount of money per month (and that we were doing them a great service by employing them!!) and they would manage the whole thing for you while you get rich!!! hmmm??

As I mentioned, I started this post nearly a year ago.  I have been remiss in actually posting it, but hope the info will be of use.  I also have no idea what has transpired in the life of the people who ran the course or whether they have done any further courses…suffice it to say, once I really looked into it, I realised that the system was essentially about spamming.  and needless to say I have distanced myself from the whole sorry lot.

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