When the computer says no...
And you want to bang your head against walls (yes: multiple) and you know that both the head banging and the annoyance is pointless - the computer is still going to say no. Wanting to shout at the person on the other end of the phone, who doesn't understand that you live in Malawi, doesn't even know that Malawi is a country (maybe she imagines it to be a town on the Big Island of Hawaii?!), is pointless.
Wanting to explain that every time she puts me on hold because she can't answer my questions (because I live in Malawi and my questions seem so outlandish) it is costing me the equivalent of an hour of her salary, is pointless.
So despite it being so pointless, I still think I am allowed to have a wee rant:
I have some Premium Bonds - old fashioned I know. They will not lose (or gain) in value. They are also put in a draw and there is the slim possibility of winning millions - I have won £100 once and I have just won another £25: Hourayyyy!! And for someone living in Malawi, they are impossible to get my little mits on to, so they are pretty safe.
After trying (and failing) to register myself online, I make this call - the first time amusingly, I was kindly asked to ring back as their systems were down??!! I double checked to make sure I had entered the correct country code, and yes, it was the UK... Weird!
A couple of hours later (things get fixed a lot quicker up there), I get through to a human and explain my problem, but I run into unforeseen problems immediately: I had already said that I lived in Malawi, and now she sees that my address is registered in the UK and apparently this is not allowed, so I need to change my details. Can I do this over the phone? No, I can't. They will however post a form out to my postbox in Malawi which I will need to fill in and return to them?? POST a form???? Really?? I then ask if this can be done by email and she is surprised that I may have access to a computer (fair enough). I ask if instead of filling it in and posting it, could I scan it and email it over? Oh no!! They need an original signature!! Are we really in 2018??!! I can tell the lady on the phone is veering in between wanting to call her manager and being amused at my outbursts... I am half crying half laughing myself.
So, I need to print this form out, fill it in, just to change my details. I also write a cover letter requesting that they reply by email as the preferred method is to reply by post??!!
Then, once the details have been changed, I will hopefully be registered for online stuff and be able to transfer my precious £25 into my bank account. Right now there is a cheque sitting at my Dad's house in the UK with my name on it. And no one else can cash it but me, and I am sitting on my bed in Zomba trying very hard to keep my nerves.