Up I pop with not very much to say, in honesty.
It’s been a while since I wrote here…not because I’ve ceased to have an opinion, nor because I don’t feel my voice has any importance, but because I’m taking time to observe the world and its people around me. I’ve also been rather busy trying to secure a publisher for my 6th book of prose and poetry titled “Memoirs of a Messed-Up Mum.”
There has also been the issue of my broken gas meter and a whole week of having no gas to cook with, no ability to heat my home and consequently, myself and my children and of course, no hot water, so feeling unclean, the last thing I wanted to do was sit at the computer and write.
I had emailed EDF several months ago (3 to be precise) and informed them that the battery on my pre-payment meter was low and needed replacing. Their response email advised me that it wasn’t an emergency complaint and thus, I had to wait until the battery died and then contact them again. When this happened, AFTER crediting the meter with £15 gas, my daughter telephoned them on my behalf and they agreed to send an engineer out within 8 hours to replace the battery. An engineer arrived 4 hours later, took one look at the meter and said he couldn’t fix it, that it was apparently a recent common problem with similar meters and that we’d have to phone the emergency number again and request another engineer be called out to repair it. So, again, my daughter phoned them and was told an engineer would visit us within 8 hours.
The second engineer came around midnight, the house was stone-cold freezing and he replaced our meter with a new one, but only put £5 credit on it. I put the heating on straight away, but that credit lasted only 2 hours. We phoned EDF the next day, a Saturday, and were informed that without a new top-up card we were unable to credit the new meter, but that when we were in receipt of it, it would have my £15 credit on it. We were told our situation wasn’t an emergency and that the card would arrive with us in due course. The children and I spent the weekend in our respective beds attempting to keep warm. On the Monday morning my daughter phoned them again and was told the payment card would be sent that day by 2nd Class post and that it would arrive with us by Wednesday at the latest and that in the meantime, we should just sit tight. I spent those 2 days crying my eyes out…it was so cold that my bones physically hurt.
Wednesday arrived but the card didn’t, so my daughter phoned EDF again and was told that an engineer would come out and put £5 credit on our meter. The engineer never arrived. The lack of hot food and inability to get clean and warm was taking its toll and our complaints were seemingly falling on deaf ears – we were told that a lot of people were in the same position and that EDF were fixing it to the best of their ability. By Thursday, even my daughter was losing patience…she phoned them again and 2 hours later an engineer arrived and put £5 on our meter…we were told that £5 was the maximum amount that the engineers were allowed to credit the meters with. That evening 2 of us managed to have a lukewarm bath each and a hot dinner…then the gas was all gone.
On Friday my daughter phoned them again to ask where our payment card was and was informed that it hadn’t been sent out due to 2 things:- apparently they use business class and can only post things out on certain days of the week – our meter had been broken a week earlier, yet no day within that week was a business class day? When my daughter said this to them she was told that their systems were down, hence the delay. So my daughter told them I was threatening to go to the press – I am disabled and the cold causes me no end of suffering. That evening an engineer came and put £10 on our meter and the next morning the pre-payment top-up card arrived by First Class post. EDF telephoned me for 4 consecutive days to make sure our gas was working all right.
I just think it’s a shame that normal people are forced to suffer as a result of a company’s inability to provide an adequate service to its customers. With all of that money from tax evasion that these fuel companies get away with under our current government, one would think they’d spend a little money training their staff and improving their services.
I’d be interested to hear stories from others regards to their dealings with the fuel companies…so do feel free to comment this post.
Last week I was fortunate enough to watch a live-stream of the Occupy protest outside the BBC in London, calling for the BBC to tell the truth in its news programs instead of fobbing us off with what the government think we should be able to watch. Too many people pay an annual TV License Fee to hear bullshit propaganda fed to us by the Tories and their over-inflated egos. The BBC bigwigs sit with fat pockets and apparently no conscience. It forced me to be realistic – we are paying to be lied to and for the most part, the great British public are content with that so long as they get to watch Eastenders and similar shows. That, in my honest opinion, is ignorance at its finest.
I’ll leave you with your thoughts and also with this:
Until next time…