Saturday, 11 September 2010

I missed a payment to the Child Support Agency(CSA) last month, I accidentally deleted the standing order. No beating around the bush with those guys. They sent a letter this morning pointing out that, they had far reaching and 'extensive powers', that they would not hesitate to use. They then went on to list them. They could, freeze my bank account, seize my property, confiscate my car, send me to prison, fine me an unlimited amount....the list continued! It reminded me of John Conner in Terminator. I thought the list would somewhere include, the CSA agent traveling back in time to execute my father before he could impregnate my mother.
They finished the letter with a paragraph explaining that if my first language was Welsh, and I wanted them to send me a translation, they could do this if I contacted them! Well, if I happened to be the only Welshman in 500 years who could not understand English, then I wouldn't have been able to read what they had just tried to tell me!

I have just installed 'Macspeech Dictate', enabling me to talk to my PC and it just writes down what I say. First I had to just answer around 300 questions, so that it could get used to the sound pattern of my voice. It's very good, but once you have been on it for a couple of hours you have to be wary when speaking to people. There is a tendency to start saying, 'Full Stop' at the end of sentences, or 'quit' before  walking away. Sometimes it just doesn't get what word you are trying to put across, and as you start swearing it doesn't help. It can even read my own scripts back to me, or any other document; so tomorrow I will have a go at writing the blog using this.

My friend Man U Dave is up above the Great Glen on the hills overlooking Lochness today, working with the Red Cross. It's my job to make sure that the most vital supply of all gets through to him and his group, as important as food and water. The football results! Manchester United, who I regard as the 'bucket team' that people pour themselves into, when they haven't got the courage to support the town where they are really from; are Dave's team (but he is from Manchester). Not sure how texts will travel up to where he is today, but we do this for each other whenever one of us is unable to get the results by any other means.

Beverley won a prize in a raffle a few months back, it arrived today. 8 bags of tree bark! I am sure she will find a use for some of it in the garden, but if you live near Penrith and want a bag or two, just let us know? Not sure how it would go in the wood burner but maybe worth a try. We used to burn peat when I lived in Ireland, it was readily available in the surrounding bogs. To look at it you wouldn't think it could burn, so on that basis, I'll have a go with the tree bark.

Me aged 3 outside my Grandparent's house in Ireland
Me in my first dress!
Not sure why us lads all had dresses for the first few years back then, I suspect it was ease of access to the nappy. I was allowed, as an incentive, to dump all my nappies in the ditch when I was finally dry at night. Total credit to my Grandmother who then had to retrieve them all when I wasn't looking, and sell them on after washing and ironing them, all over again.

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