Brenda’s Unfortunate Record #25


So a few weeks back (episode #19) I was bumbling on about the trials and tribulations of obtaining a foreign police check. I have an update. 

I contact Canadian broker, fork out an eye-watering $195USD, stick my prints in registered post & receive confirmation of receipt. It doesn’t take long for the check to be processed & about 10 days ago I get an email saying the certificate is being sent via UPS. Delivery’s scheduled for Thursday. So we make sure someone’s in (as you do) and of course it doesn’t turn up. Next day I call UPS only to be informed the package is ‘lost’. They can’t really discuss the matter with me so I need to notify the sender, which I do. I also turn to twitter to vent my frustration. I’m not a regular user. My feed is either linked to FB posts or the occasional bits of self-promotion. Last time I ranted was to Virginmedia and before that, Eurostar – a 5am high-octane exchange which included in-depth descriptions of jammed door, stinking toilets, photo evidence of torn seats and extortionate ticket price. I finally managed to fall asleep on the nightmare train and by the time I got to Paris, had calmed down enough to delete the evidence. 

I get embarrassed about public blow-outs, even if these days it seems the most effective way to get a company’s attention. In saying that, in my limited experience the result is rarely satisfying. Some molly-coddling from a far-removed, customer-service rep. Stock, empty responses which do little to rectify the situation. And yet it’s almost impulsive. Like for a moment you think you hold the all power and by spreading the work of your unjust treatment, you can single-handedly bring down the giants. That’s probably what they want you to think. Keep you in your place and all. 

In this recent UPS case, I’m still awaiting the package. The broker’s have kindly informed me they can issue another certificate for $25, which makes me think chances are slim it will ever turn up. If I was a lawyer I’d kick off not only about this new fee, but that such sensitive personal information was MIA. Cause I can’t make a claim, can I? Pfffffffff.  

Years ago I had similar grievances with the Royal Mail. It was back in the mid-naughties working for a creative design agency in Shoreditch. New Labour were still in power and privatisation was sneaking in. After a series of lost packages and various mishaps, I decide to write a letter to the Queen, suggesting she remove her affiliation with this sub-standard service. 

The response might not have been instant and despite tongue held firmly in cheek, the answer is still hanging up on my wall. Can’t say that about a tweet. 

Anyway, back to this UPS thing. In my mind I’m screaming, ‘if this package doesn’t turn up, there’ll sure be trouble!’ but in reality, I’m resigned to defeat. 


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