22 Jun 2011

Hestia ...and the Big 60th pressie

UPS - Unhelpful Postal Service
'It seemed like a good idea at the time'.  Oh, how many times have those words been uttered as the speaker sits in the still-smoking debris of their latest misadventure?

Let's spool back to the beginning of this year when my lovely Day Carer mentioned that it was her hubby's 60th birthday in a few weeks time.  They are both incredibly kind to me and Sonshine when Tartarus is away - The hubby comes up and cuts my grass, waters my plants in my absence and has even been known to feed the Nibster and the fish if Sonshine and I are away overnight.

'Wouldn't it be a great idea for you and Ronnie to go and watch the MotoGP in Assen this year?  As his 60th birthday present?' I mused idly as we read our respective magazines (me: Red; Tartarus: Evo <- we like a brief title) in bed one night.  Think Eric and Ernie, but with less sexual frisson.

Tartarus has long wanted to go to Assen and my suggestion seemed....like a good idea at the time........

Time wore on and all that the two of them could talk about was Going To The MotoGP.

Eventually I decided to tune back into their conversations and was startled to realise that they were no longer thinking about Assen, but heading off to Italy.  For 10 days.  Flying.

I'm afraid, reader, that at this point my calm and placid nature went into a bit of a meltdown and I pointed out to Tartarus that he and I hadn't been on a holiday abroad for 10 years because he 'didn't like flying' and that our son had never been out the country.  Basically, if he was thinking about pissing off to Italy for a holiday with his mate he could a) reconsider the whole option and revert to a weekend in Assen or b) fuck off and don't come back after the Italian sojourn.

And so the tickets for Assen were booked.

And the hotel.

And the ferry.

And the RAC international rescue whathaveyou.

And the shorts purchased.

And the excitement began to mount......


Tartarus checked to see when the MotoGP tickets would actually be posted out.  'Between 7 and 10 days before the event' proclaimed the ticket agency proudly on their website.

It was now less than 7 days to the event.

And no tix.

We phoned them.  In Holland.  Could the tickets be picked up at the event instead?  Could we pick them up at a UPS Customer Service Centre in the UK?

'Too late.  The tickets are in the post.  But RELAX, it's UPS.  And no, you can't uplift them from a UPS Customer Service Centre - there has to be one unsuccessful delivery before you can arrange to pick them up.'

No amount of wheedling, weeping, shouting or offers of cash would make them budge.

Reader, we checked the UPS website so frequently over the next couple of days that we wore the U and the P and the U off the keyboard.

Where were the tix?

By Saturday they were in Glasgow.  Tartarus began to relax - he and Day Carer's hubby were leaving on Wednesday,  that was PLENTY of time to deliver to the island.

Ah, you would think so, wouldn't you?

On Sunday I checked to see where the tickets were.

Still in Glasgow, but now there was an additional message ' Customer lives in remote area, no daily delivery.'

We do live on an island, that's true.  But we're much less remote than many mainland areas of Scotland.  You basically drive down the M8, past Glasgow, until the M8 tapers out to a dual carriageway called the A8 and pooter along the side of the river Clyde until you get to Wemyss Bay.

The fecking VIKINGS managed the journey on a regular basis, why couldn't UPS????

I phoned again, begging to be allowed to pick up the tickets as the whole anticipation of the MotoGP event was being ruined.

'Computer says no,' came back the reply.

Tuesday.  The day before departure day.  I am up at 6am to go to a Spa Day in Glasgow. I log on to UPS.  'Delivery date sheduled for....THURSDAY'

I relay this information to a clearly tense Tartarus lying recumbent in the early morning light and depart hastily to catch the 8am ferry to Civilisation.

The spa treatments come and go.  I check my phone for messages for the 10th time.  Nothing.

We go to lunch.  I look at my phone.  It rings.

The tickets have been delivered.  The relief in Tartarus's voice is palpable.

It's now Wednesday morning and Tartarus and The Day Carer's hubby are off to Assen.

Here's my message to UPS - get yourselves SORTED OUT!!!!!!

And one final thing, no, Tartarus didn't notice ANY difference after my spa treatments.


  1. That sounds far more stressful that it ough to have been. Glad you put your foot down though xx

  2. I had a saga with DHL Melbourne. Complained, put it on web site. Its over ten days not even a reply! with me it was a lost letter which they never retrieved. I had to go house to house and retrieve myself.

  3. LOL Tartarus is so oblivious it makes me laugh ,....or else I'd cry.

  4. the bastards! they absolutely ought to have let you pick up - would've saved their sorry asses a trip to your remote area. god, i despise it when the world is shown to be run by clueless morons.

    spa day sounds fab!

  5. Hang on a mo' - Tartarus doesn't like flying??? - how come he manages to go to some far-flung South American place every 6 weeks or so (and occasionally come back a day or 2 late...)?
    What a load of aggro - and how inflexible of UPS. S'pose the worry he endured caused the non-registering of the rejuvenated you? x

  6. Agree with Trashsparkle, how can he fly off to Mexico if he "hates" flying.

    Good post, I was getting tense near the end. Would the tickets get there on time?

    Well done on putting your foot down about the 10 day holiday in sunny Italia, but a question.
    Wouldn't that have been the ideal time to get you and Sonshine on the trip as well?

  7. Oh my. These situations are the worst ever for me. I can't handle the pressure.

    You are a good friend!

  8. oh don't get me started...Utter-Phucking-Shambles....I hate them, I have a flat number for a named block on a street....computer can't cope with that so always misses off the number...as for the 'no fly zone'....grounds for divorce I say!!!xx

  9. Sorry for your UP-lack-of-Service - that's pretty poor.

    Was Tartarus thinking of going to Magello? You should have tagged along and got a nice hotel in Florence for you and sonshine - we went once, mind, and it rained all day up in the hills. I think Assen will be pretty horrid, but worst one I've been to was Donnington a few years back - DISGUSTING fat drunken shirtless oafs, no vegetarian food, Japanese POW torture loos and nowhere to wash your hands. Much better by far to watch on TV. The sport would be greatly improved with a 2000% ticket price hike and a rigorously enforced dress code. xxx

  10. You are a good wife, Ali. And yes, UPS needs to get their shit together.

    Love you!

  11. I'm a little late on the uptake here. UPs are little better in the USA. As you know, we are Island dwellers (inconsiderate bastards to mail order companies)and receiving anything you order is a lottery.
    Come to Vashon soon, Tertarus won't even know you are gone.

  12. I am thoroughly stressed from reading that, and now have to lie down with a magazine JUST TO RECOVER.
    You must go on a holiday, very soon.
    Love, The Very Grumpy Harridan Who Also Needs A Holiday

  13. Dearest Ali, I FINALLY get to catch up with you and you never fail to crack me up.

    What a pallaver with the tickets!

    I can't believe he didn't notice a thing after the spa treatments and the Eric and Ernie line is priceless. Love you xx


I'd love you to comment, but I get a phenomenal amount of spam comments on here for some reason - so everything is moderated. But only for spam. Any other comment will be posted :-D

Explore the ruined citadel of m'blog: