Saturday, 29 May 2010

It's a long, long way from there to here.

As most of you know, and some of you don't, I'm from Dublin. I've been living in Mansfield in the UK for eight years now (oh my god, has it really been eight years?) with my two boys and my OH, Paul.  We were all born in Dublin, all 100% Irish.  I find it odd how many people ask me if Paul is Irish or English, I suppose him being English would explain our move here.  We moved here simply by fluke, a sequence of events that we just let carry us across the Irish Sea.  Paul had been working in car sales in Dublin, but the company he was working for was closing and offered him a job at any of their branches in the UK.  When Paul told me, I gave him a flat "NO".. it wasn't going to happen, no way no how.  We were in the process of selling our house, but hadn't found anywhere new yet. Paul said then he had to go to Manchester for training.... and that was it! He never came back!  And it was left to me, with two small kids, to finish the sale of the house, pack up and leave.  Grounds for divorce you say....  well, had we been married and had the alimony been worth it, I probably would have.  But instead we moved! 
I'm so glad we did though.  We've loved living here and wouldn't have it any other way.  The lads are settled, we have friends and, despite moving for the job he had, Paul left soon after and moved jobs several times in the last eight years.  He's never had a problem getting a job and is constantly getting offers.  I suppose in that way, we've been very lucky.
But we still miss home, all for different reasons I think.  I miss my family.  Keeping in touch by email and Facebook is all very fine, but nothing bets a cup of tea and a chat.... except I suppose a glass of wine and a gossip!  Paul misses the oddest things... he listens to RTE radio in the car, always knows what's going on in Ireland.  He loves to have a bitch and moan with anyone who'll listen about all things political in Ireland.  Andy loves being Irish, he's so proud of his heritage and likes to touch base every now and then.  And Joe just wants, for the most part, to hang out with his cousins.
We're off to Dublin on Tuesday for a few days.  It's too expensive and we really can't afford it.... but sometimes there's no place like home.  Put the kettle on, we're on our way!

The customer is always right.

So, for those of you who read my last post and asked what the outcome was, here it is.
Yesterday, I received a letter from Walkers, apologising for the standard of their product and enclosing 2 x £1.50 vouchers off my next purchase.
Ok, so it's not a years supply, but it was worth the cost of an email!

Friday, 21 May 2010

Excuse me, may I speak with the Manager?

I'm not one to moan but sometimes, the smallest things can really grate on my nerves! Most of all I hate bad customer service. I always complain when things don't meet the standards I have paid for. I'm never rude (I've worked in customer service and rudeness doesn't work), but I do try to be confident, articulate and just a little intimidating (in the nicest possible way, of course!).
However, since the invent of email, complaining, commenting and sometimes even complimenting has become easier to do and so I do it quite a bit more.

Last week, I bought a multipack of Walkers crisps for the lads lunches. I used to by Asda's own brand but found that at least a quarter of the packs I'd bought, an inner pack had been caught up when the outer pack was sealed and so when I opened the outer pack, the inner pack opened and because I wasn't using them straight away, but storing them, that pack was left to go stale and never used (still with me?). So last week THE SAME THING HAPPENED WITH THE WALKERS PACK! Now I know it's not the end of the world, but as I said above, the smallest things....

And so, this is the complaint I emailed to Walkers this evening... I'm hopefully my sarcasm will mean free crisps for the rest of the year! Or at least, a replacement 6-pack...

"was disappointed to find, when i opened the multipack, that one of the inner packs had become sealed with the outer pack and so opened also. as i use the crisps for lunches, this meant that one bag was useless.. left alone and abandoned in the kitchen cupboard, left to go stale yet loathe to be trashed. it sits there still, while all of the other five have been enjoyed and had a worthwhile existence. i keep it to remind me that you don't always get what you pay for. walkers make a sandwich great you say? what goes well with stale walkers then... mouldy cheese? rotting ham?? i wonder if gary lineker would approve...."