Friday, 9 January 2015

Happy - but fuming too

Yesterday was...  well, interesting would be one word.  There had been heavy rain overnight and as we went out to the car the Old Bat shrieked - the drain in the drive had been unable to cope and the water was an inch deep.  But we paddled on and drove away.  As we got down the hill, the water was fountaining from the drains and the local high school playing field was a lake - something neither of us had ever seen before.  Then I took one look at the flood water at the crossroads - and turned back to find another way!

We arrived at our friends' place a little later than expected having been held up by roadworks somewhere in south London.  A short but pleasant visit before we dropped them off for J's hospital appointment and headed further into darkest London to arrive in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea for the Old Bat's appointment.  The hospital has no parking facility and I dropped the OB off at the entrance, eventually finding a spot with a single yellow line where I was able to park with the blue (disabled) badge on display.  We sat in a very crowded waiting room with her clinic running an hour behind.

At last the OB was called.  When the doctor came in, she expressed surprise.  "Going by your notes and the last blood test results, I expected to see somebody looking very poorly, but you look very well!"  The OB replied that she felt very well.  It was mutually agreed that chemotherapy was probably not a good idea, especially in view of the probably side effects on a person of such limited mobility, but that if further treatment is needed, steroids might well be the answer.  Another scan is wanted, but this can probably be arranged nearer home in Brighton or Haywards Heath.  So that's the good bit.

When she was done, I left the OB just inside the door while I fetched the car.  Which had a parking ticket tucked under the windscreen wiper.  I pulled up at the hospital entrance only to be berated by an ambulance driver who claimed I had not signalled.  I assured him that I had, whereupon he became rather aggressive.  Ignoring his rant, I flapped my hand at him and walked away.  But he followed me and stood no more than two inches away from my face shouting at me.  I said nothing, until two nurses came rushing from the hospital, telling him to stop shouting, at which point I told him that if I had inadvertently done something to offend him, I apologised (or something like that).  One of the nurses was most solicitous, checking that I was OK.

On the drive home, my sat-nav seemed intent on sending me round in circles but I eventually ignored "her" and followed my nose - and the signs - until "she" finally caught up with me.  Like credit cards, sat-navs make good servants but bad masters (or mistresses).

On checking this morning, I find that the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, along with the cities of Westminster and London and part of the borough of Camden, have different parking rules to the rest of the country when it comes to blue badges.  This is explained in the notes that come with the blue badge - but I read those when the OB got her badge - and that was three years' ago!  So that's £65 I have to fork out.  If she needs to go there again, the OB will have to ask to be taken by ambulance (at enormous expense to the NHS!).

And this morning I have received a response from the ombudsman service to a complaint I made recently about a local firm with whom I have been having problems since last September.  The ombudsman asks me to send a copy of the firm's complaint handling procedures and evidence that I have exhausted these.  Part of my complaint to the ombudsman was that the firm refused to send me a copy of their complaints handling procedure!

Is it just me going mad - or have the inmates taken over the asylum?


Sarah said...

Well that sucks BP! One thing I would say is that it may be worthwhile challenging the parking ticket. You do have a limited amount of time to do it but it might well be worth it. SD got a ticket in Cornwall in the summer, the circumstances were different, it was in a car park and we had no idea that we were supposed to put a ticket on the caravan as well as the van and so got a ticket. We challenged it and it was waived. I think you clearly have a case for saying it was a genuine mistake.

(not necessarily your) Uncle Skip, said...

Why do I keeping thinking of Lewis Carroll?