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  • janenewaudby

The squeaky wheel

Its that time of year when we eat too much and look back over the year. We live in funny times. Not funny ha ha: Funny weird. Sometimes I am glad I live in my Highland bubble. My neighbours are lovely and we help each other out in an old fashioned way. I drink a lot of tea. Here I can imagine I live in world without extremism, evil dictators, corporate greed, point scoring politicians, fake news.... Its no accident that even the most socially responsible person in the village has stopped watching the news. Its too depressing - and inward looking. Having said this, lately some of us have started to feel the need to do something more than just support our community and vote responsibly. Where do you start (assuming global poverty and mass migration are too big for starters)?. I am incensed that we don't have a mobile signal in much of the Highlands. It's a massive inconvenience for anyone running a business. Even so, if I want a mobile phone, I still have to pay my mobile phone contract as if I live in the World of 5G, or choose pay as you go. The mobile phone companies don't give a toss.... What can I do? (My brilliant sister in law was once so cross with a communications company's deliberate obfuscation to her complaint, she said "WOULD IT GET YOUR ATTENTION IF I TURNED UP WITH A BOMB?" - the communications company sent the police to her house....).

I was going to choose the plastics and water debate, though funnily enough parliament are getting in on that. At last. The homeless issue is increasing exponentially in our towns and cities. When I last went to London, I was shocked. I wonder if Londoners have noticed the creeping numbers of people sleeping rough. What can I do? Then there is the right to die.... it makes me MAD that a person cannot choose when they die, when there are sensitive and rigorous controls that can be designed to prevent its abuse. But what can I do? These issues are so big and complicated, its no wonder people are overwhelmed and feel so helpless, possibly including the politicians. Sorry to depress you... but do you feel powerless too?

Anyway, I don't have a magic solution, but I do have a voice. It might be small, but its all I have. This year I got the local Tesco to restock whole greens.....("why is Tesco chopping my vegetables?"). But I failed to get O2 to keep its wireless calling app.... did I mention I hate mobile phone companies? I did succeed in getting BT to recognise the village had been cut off (twice) when the Customer Service team kept telling each of us the problem was ours. Small victories. Whatever it is you care about, don't stay quiet. If those big corporates try and take you for a ride, find out who to complain to, and do it. If customer services don't listen, look up The executive customer service team will get on the case, and it will be as if sunlight just came out from behind the clouds. Whatever you do, use your voice. If we all did it, maybe something would happen. Just maybe. Mainly, just remember that its the squeaky wheel that gets the oil.

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