Wednesday 21 January 2009


I know: it has been a while. While I do have certain computer skills, I have not yet mastered the art of writing the blog when I am away from home. If it would involve taking the lap-top with me, then that would be one more thing to carry and another reason to rent a young man for help around the airports or train stations or wherever. (See previous posts if the reference eludes
you,) and the thought of going in to an internet cafe or the business centre of an hotel scares the life out of me. How would I even get on to the site? ( That question was rhetorical but if you are really moved to tell me, then, please do.)
But to get on with what has been frustrating me. Writing this post is a case in point. I have no idea how it will look when I click on " publish post", but as it stands at this moment there is half a sentence lounging in the middle of the page. This has been going on since I started and I have got round it by typing busily on so that the words slide obligingly to the left. However, that ceases to work when I need a new paragraph. At last, it occured to me to 'align left' but how the h... did it get centralised in the first place?. Hey Ho. As the Guru says, I must have done SOMETHING (No, I did'nt. It was the wizard of cyberspace, but the Guru is never going to believe me).
To get on with frustration: while I was away I sent a text to my travel agent asking him to pay a premium for a 'leg room' space on the return journey. Five and a half hours on a charter flight in an ordinary seat is not good news if you are any bigger than, say, 4'11''. (Can't do the metres) I used to be 5'7'': seven and a half, actually, but I can't find a half sign on the keyboard. I am quite a bit less than that, now, but even so, it was seriously cramped. The agent sent an email to the manager of the hotel saying that I could not have such a seat "because of her age". Apart from the fact that it took three days for the email to filter down to me, I was incandescent with rage at the ageism of it. I can sprint with the best of them when life is in danger, if that's the concern, and, given that it may be a concern, at least take each case on its merits. Anyway, what do you think about using a company that feels able actually to print the words "because of her age"?
I have been applying for work as a Mystery Shopper. This means you go in to various commercial projects and find out if they are really offering what it says they do on the tin. You are employed by the Head Offices of these concerns via an intermediary who is the one who 'sources' you. I am an excellent spy, having been a nosey parker all my life, and earned my living by it for 43 years. I am also an acutely trained observer and reporter for the same reason. Ideal, wouldn't you say? The jobs offered so far - all done via the internet - have had an upper age limit of 65. What's a girl to do when she is only 40 on the inside and can't get used to the world's view of her as too old for leg room and too old for espionage?
Further more, I can no longer hire a car from the two companies that operate in my home town. 74 is cut-off point. That means I have to drive 200 miles, which is tedious, and robs me of a nice read on the train, because it would be hard to manage without transport when I got there. This post IS called frustration, it's true, but that's enough of it for now, we are all thinking.
Talking of transport, we were beside a river, the Nile, actually, so a lot of movement was by boat. Now, those of you who have been keeping up, will know that I have had to do quite a lot of Scottish island boats and could be said to have got away with it, nicely, but getting away with it from a narrow strip of rocky bank, via a plank, if you please, on to a small rocking boat is frustratingly difficult if your legs are not as obedient as they used to be. My inside person so much wanted to go, I had to give myself a few good talkings-to to overcome my terror and, Dear Reader, overcome it I did
But one good old-age thing: I have no hesitation in speaking to strangers any more, as I had when I was 40, and, thus, met some very nice people on my week's break. Twice I guessed correctly the occupation of fellow guests and gave the Guru further evidence I am a white witch. I suppose that would entitle me to agelessness. Witches surely don't have ages. But it doesn't do a lot for the frustration age seems to incur in the world of Muggles!

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