Friday, 26 September 2008

I Don't Believe It!

I had a rather horrible experience today and need to have a minor rant about it.

I was on my way into town with Nipper to meet a friend for coffee and a catch-up. I could hear my phone beeping and noticed I'd missed a call which was from my Dad asking me to get in touch asap. Now, my parents hardly ever ring me, and never on my mobile, and they don't leave messages of the 'phone home' variety. I was quite alarmed as my Mum hasn't been very well over the last month, and from the tone of my Dad's voice I thought she'd popped her clogs!

I tried to ring home but realised I didn't have enough phone credit. I don't use the phone very much and haven't needed to top-up since I got it. I usually top-up online so have no idea how to top-up otherwise. I ran the rest of the way into town, pushing Nipper in the pram, and went to the O2 shop (my network) figuring they'd give me a hand. There was a huge queue so I dashed across the road to the Phones4U shop as that's where I bought the phone a couple of months ago (after Nipper dropped mine into a cup of tea!). The shop was empty - hurrah - so I explained my situation: new-ish phone, run out of credit, don't know how to top-up, 'emergency' message, help help!

The chap at the counter asked me where I bought the phone. Every phone shop is able to do a top-up, and Phones4U isnt tied to any network, so why he needed to know this is beyond me. Then he asked how much I wanted to top-up. Great, I thought, we're getting somewhere. When I said £20 (possible long phonecall to Dad required) he then asked me how often I topped up with £20. I said not very often...emergency phone...first top up since bought it...etc, etc. And guess what??? Instead of helping me with a top-up...HE TRIED TO SELL ME A CONTRACT!

This image came to mind (photo from Google):

I nearly shouted "I don't believe it" a la Victor Meldrew! I'm sweating like a pig having run pushing a pram, and having palpitations because I'm thinking the worst, and he's trying to get his days' commission! I nearly lost it, but figured that wouldn't help, so very politely said, through clenched teeth, that I couldn't think about a contract now as I was in dire need of the top-up so I could check if my Mother had snuffed it! He then took my money, fiddled with the till, and shoved a handful of papers at me saying "follow the instructions". He couldn't even be bothered to give me the top-up voucher on it's own and explain what I needed to do. When I bought my phone from them they were falling over themselves to help, presumably to get the commission, but clearly just selling a top-up isn't worth their while.

When I finally managed to speak to my Dad he said that Mum had been taken into hospital yesterday with a suspected stroke. However, the hospital aren't sure what's wrong as she doesn't have 'classic' stroke symptoms. They sent her home this evening with a multitude of tablets and she's now waiting for an MRI scan. Presumably she's not at death's door or they wouldn't have sent her home - though you never know with the NHS - lol!

So the moral of this story is make sure your emergency phone has enough credit for an emergency phone-call, and don't expect someone to help you unless there's something in it for them!



  1. Bless your heart! I hope your Mum gets better soon!

  2. How upsetting!
    Why are ppl always on the make...what has happened to the days when ppl just helped instead of thinking whats in it for them!!!
    You must have felt desperate!
    I really hope your mum is ok.....
    Big hug from me!!xxxxx

  3. Dear me dont these salesmen have any shame? What an awful experience, you must have been out of your mind with worry. I hope your mum is feeling better soon.

  4. Oh Tilly, you sense of humour made me laugh, sorry.

    I am glad your Mum is home. We were trying to find someone's house about a week ago. My husband was keeping an eye on how much credit we had left on the phone. In the middle of it he passed the phone to me so the lady could give me directions while he drove. I couldn't beleive it, he used up the credit. So in the middle of finding the dog we had to dash off to the Post Office. Which was OK as he knows how to use those pieces of paper. He has come home from the local shop with a little card thing, I am assuming it is a new thing.

  5. I hope your Mom is better soon!

  6. Sorry to hear about your mum I hope she is feeling better soon.

    As for that shop, that is what some of these people are like in these places, they would sell their own granny

  7. Goodness me I hope your Mother will be okay. What a horrible experience with the phone people, some folk are just insensitive aren't they? Well maybe that is a polite way of putting it!

  8. Good evening!
    Watching after you've gone and blogging.....i very tired scoffing a muffin and drinking tea also!
    I'm pleased with the result, i was going to buy some ck wallpaper but i can't afford this makes up for it!
    the shelves are neat for the morning....boy it will be adifferent matter!!!


  9. what a nightmare and how mercenary people are nowadays!!! hope she improves - its makes us realise our age when our parents start to seem old :-( I do have a contract for mine though - am far to forgetful to ever remember to top-up :-S
    Lesley x

  10. My god Tilly. I don't know whether I should be howling at some of the expressions in your post - I mean, I am Canadian I was not quite certain what "popped her clogs" and "snuffed it" meant but somewhat deduced from the post :) I am so glad everything is alright and, well I HOPE everything is alright. But I totally bond with you on the vulture man, what a creep. And, excellent picture of him - you should send it to his boss. You need a really nice cup of tea girl and a relaxing spa or something. I would have been frantic as well, I don't think my parents even know how to call my cell phone or even know the number!!

  11. Hope she's okay now Tilly. When I first read this, I thought it was your DAD trying to sell you the contract. I was totally pissed at him. So glad that dad is not like that at all.


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