JOURNEYS…

To avoid forgetting anything, I wrote up a list, each item in itself proving to be a journey. These journeys all connected with technology.  I needed a structure, something I could see, refer to, add to, (things kept slipping my mind…so much going on) and as each item was actioned, I wanted to see it marked up as ‘started’, or, scored through as ‘done’.

I deal with security updates as soon as I am alerted.  I also scan my system to see if I’m all up-to-date. I can mark that one as…….  Continuing task – done for now.

A friend seems to have disappeared off my radar.  An email I sent about a month ago has not been returned, I think this might be good; but, her home phone number no longer connects.  She was treated for a serious illness a few years ago.  An internet search brings up old information.  Inside, I am on an emotional roller coaster. I mark this search as ‘started’, (journey to be continued).

Ransom malware has caused major, major, seizures of computer data, disrupting  UK  Health Services and many business systems.  It’s a concerted worldwide attack.  Technology and security experts talk about maintaining the security and integrity of computer operating systems.  An important security patch was available from March.  What the circumstances may tell us is, that this is too complex an event to be resolved by a concrete answer. This is marked ‘Stay Aware’

Try as hard as I might, sending a money gift securely to a new baby,  living abroad,  has proved exasperating. There’s no obvious reason given to me from a list of possibilities suggested by the company.   Mum sends  new information.  But, the website continues to stop the transaction.  However, because the latest information is correct, the company can tell me that there is a security issue with the account to which I am trying to send the gift.  Keeping the link closed is protecting accounts from potentially being compromised, including mine.  Wow! Am I glad of that!  What a journey this one is.   Task marked ‘Started’     (… problematic).

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OPENING PANDORA’S BOX

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Pandora’s Box

I meant to unplug my charged up  e-tablet and ended up instead, opening up Pandora’s Box.  Don’t ask me why, I can’t tell you.  I opened a file drawer.  It’s one I have used for nondescript and personal  ‘stuff ‘.  Mind you, I have been known to create a folder or two there, just because it wasn’t over-stuffed like the actual filing cabinet we both use.

can-of-worms-vector-id180621048For a couple of hours I was absorbed in reviving memories, (a lot of them not good ones) and slimming down the contents of folders. When I had finished with the first folder, my hand crept to the next one.   A can of worms had lain there too. This one was approximately a sixteen years old triple sandwich, with a mildew mild top filling,  fizzing chili in the middle, mercifully, followed by a layer of cooling cucumber.

It is hard curating sorting out your own ‘stuff’, your own interconnected paper trail of life.  I found I was not able to be totally objective.  Even after many years, emotions can and do ripple. I wonder if I had planned to do this job, I might have felt any different.

A shredded bucket of my life later, my pack of plastic pockets has swelled with a great many Woolworth’s ones that I freed up. (That’s a store long gone).  They seem to be a better quality plastic pocket than those they share the packet with.

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NOT ENOUGH SECURITY

We are exhorted in endless ways to be security conscious, are we not? …YES WE ARE.

Don’t do this, don’t answer that, we won’t  phone you, we shall never ask you anything personal etc. etc.

I received a phone call. The guy asked for me by my surname, introduced himself with a first name and told me he was phoning about an issue I had raised about [nameless] bank. So that we could discuss the matter he would first need to go through security with me; so saying, he launched into the first (and last) personal question .

Giving me a first name was not sufficient for me, though he evidently thought it was.

No, he couldn’t tell me anything more without going through security with me. And, if I was refusing to clear security with him then he could not give me any information.

One sided security here, ringing all the alarm bells. If  the call was being recorded, I wanted it to be recorded that this call was unsatisfactory. Like a good girl, I was keeping to the security rules and keeping mine safe. Surely, for his part to confirm his status to me, information could be given about when the issue was raised at least and perhaps who may have dealt with any call relating to it. (Those were my questions).

The answer: you’ve probably guessed it – not without me going through the [ bank’s] security, with which, given the nature of the call, I was not going to oblige. Obviously tetchy, he said, in that case he would have to write to me.

I offered to phone him. Yes, I could have a number to call him on but, (there’s always a but isn’t there) ” I am between two floors and you might not get me.”
  
I await a letter.

WHAT QUESTIONS? WHAT ANSWERS?

I have been through the findings (see post on treasure trove) and have found a few more items. It has been an emotional roller coaster and left me with many, many questions I want to ask, and there is no-one to ask who could answer them. The excitement has waned into fact and reality.

It is an exercise as much about what I have, and even more, about what is missing. It saddens me that I shall not be able to piece together much of that. I do have a little more information somewhere, which I shall have to locate and tidy up, to put with the fragmented story I have so far put together.

One day, sometime in the future, someone will uncover the treasure trove again. When that happens, there will be at least two more archives to join it. I have been thinking about this. I shall not be here. It is difficult to know what questions need to be answered for future generations.

SPOUTING STEAM

Today has been one of ‘those’ days.

When it was bright it was bright, but by heavens! Some evil hail downpours came through in-between times.

I have had a must do note to chase up the tax office,  which I activated late last week, (yet again). Three calls later – now today is Wednesday isn’t it – I have been told;

Monday; Miss A finishes at 2pm (it was 3.20pm) her hours were from 9.a.m.

Tuesday; Miss A was having a day off.  It is then discovered my file is now held by someone more senior, Mr W, who it is said, will phone Wednesday morning, (today).

Wednesday  – wait for it…

Mr W has a day off, there’s been a family matter, he might be in tomorrow or Friday.  Following some sympathetic clucking on my part and pointing out that I needed some care and consideration as well, an offer of assistance was given.

My file has indeed been worked upon – at last – a refund, though small, has been sent but could take 7 – 10 days to get out of the office and my tax coding has been suitably adjusted.

And what else, a letter has been drafted to tell me my original and important papers have been ‘mislaid’ probably ‘mis-filed’. They can’t find them.  Surprise, surprise (not!) Mis-filing is supposed to soothe my worried brow; it does not.  Anything being mis-used can be said to be mis-filed.  No answer to that one.

Next on today’s agenda. Legal papers were lost between a major court in the land and the lawyer who was meant to receive them. Believe it or not, they were sent by special legal mail delivery services. I reckon it must be the same ‘secure’ delivery service the tax offices use, they of the CD Disk losses of thousands of personal records. This does not inspire confidence.

Escaping to a beauty therapy appointment, it happens that the therapist cannot find my record cards. At this point in the day, I shut down my senses or I would have been spouting steam.

THE GREAT ESCAPE

As the Christmas mail and cards roll in, I am ready with scissors in hand, carefully cutting stamps off envelopes and scissoring around identity and address details to prepare for for shredding.   

I don’t know why you are going to so much trouble” says hubby,
“After all, the government is already giving away all our identity details on CD’s.”