Disability training required!

Firstly, a quick reminder for the newer folk around here, and numbers do seem to have exploded viewing this, so…I’m on holiday now, in Seattle. What this means for those lucky people who know to read both blogs, there’s no point, they just get copy and paste treatment, as most would want to know the same things, and besides, I dont have the time to write 2! So… Yes, I know, its been a while, but more on that in a moment!

Strictly, the holiday made an early start on Thursday, as I went into Am Dram mode again in Cookridge, with a couple of work friends. I would spend time praising the performance to the hilt, and telling you to go see it, but there were only 3 shows, its finished by now, but…It was really good, I must say, as was the meal before that, both the food, and the company.

I was going to post something on Friday re the reduction of stakes on the ghastly machines in betting shops nowadays, from £100, to £2, but firstly I ran out of time, having my hair done (shock horror, I’m not a natural blonde!), and then packing to come here. So it never happened. Mind, as the reduction wont kick in until 2020, I shall probably be rude about the betting industry before then!

Yesterday was just a typical US Travel day in so many ways, that I’ll only pass on the interesting details. Yes, Manchester Airport redeemed themselves this time, though they get one more chance to mess up yet. As does Seattle, where a lovely young lady not only helped me through, and got my baggage for me, she actually ran me over to where the hotel courtesy shuttles pick up, and I’m sure thats not in their job description. But the middle one… No, it wasnt bad, just the opposite in fact, really good service, but…

Every other airport I’ve seen in the US (even before I needed this ‘old crock’ service) has either had a separate line for wheelchair passengers, or mingled them into the crew column, or a mix of both. Ah, but this is Vegas, so…Its not the biggest International sector, I suspect it doesnt need it. So there is a crew column, but access passengers…no! Seems we, regardless of nationality go into the US there, in the US citizen queue. So yes, lol, dont tell Trump, but I’m a US citizen, of sorts! Not really, but yes, it was amusing.

Today has been relatively quiet, as I gave the body chance to recover in advance with planning. In truth, with the warmth here, less needed, but anyway… Just to say, for those who care, I now have an active US cell phone again, until next Sunday, so if you wish to talk, for any reason, just ask for number. If I dont know you of sorts, tell me why you want to talk to me, OK? Not saying I wont give it, but just curious, thats all. Only works for 8 days anyway!

OK, there has to be a down point, doesnt there? Yes, there is one, though hopefully the Mariners will sort it out, they have been emailed already. The game was great, the only snag being that the seat was up more than a few stairs, which didnt help, but I got there eventually, with only minimal soreness. No reason they should have known, I’m not obviously disabled (brace is under top/skirt, and fact not mentioned), so how would the poor guy picking my seat know? I did come down after 7.5 innings, I needed to go ‘somewhere’, and never went back up. Actually found a more comfortable seat for the other 3.5 innings, as it went to overtime. Then, after Seattle had won…

Given I was sore, and given there was a sign for a disabled elevator nearby, I decided to use that to get downstairs, rather than struggling down a large number of stairs, in a large crowd of people. Unfortunately, the lady in the elevator had either failed her disability training, had never been given any, or just didnt think it applied to anyone in less than a wheelchair! So when I, and another lady who said she had walking difficulties got into the lift, she bluntly told us that the lift wasnt meant for ‘people like you’, and pointing at a couple of mothers, with buggies behind us, said, “Its meant for them!”. I have no objection to them using it, but it does say its a disability elevator, so… Complaint email has been sent to the Mariners accordingly! Do I expect anything more than platitudes from them? Probably not! But put it this way, not that they will care, but I had planned a second game at some point Friday, or Saturday, but certainly wont be bothering now! I know, whats 1 customer to them, but all the same…

Fine, video time. I couldnt think of a song that really fitted in with all this, so just made a random choice of an under rated Soft Cell song.

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Who me, working in Nevada?

No, dont get over excited, it was a false alarm. But for a short while I dreamed the dream, of not only working in the US, but in the sports betting industry, in one of the big gambling cities of the world. No, despite the video selection, it wasnt Las Vegas. The other big gambling center in Nevada though, Tahoe.

Right, what happened. Earlier this week, I got one of my job availability emails, and it was from my former employers in Leeds. No, not my old job, but more on that shortly. Different department, different role, but nothing I couldnt do with ease. And yes, one of their Monday to Friday jobs, to top that. So fine, yes, I applied. Havent heard anything back yet, but as applications havent closed yet, thats not necessarily a major shock.

What I didnt realize at the time, was that if you applied for jobs there, they automatically place you on a list that emails out jobs that you are qualified/suited for, to you. So, the next day, when I get one offering me the chance to work as a Ticket Handler, in their Sports Betting Department, in Tahoe, Nevada, I couldnt quite believe my luck! I mean, all my details said I was currently in the UK, but anyway…my idea of work heaven!

So, after a few hours of thinking that they had the wrong person (or location, anyway), but knowing they’d sent it to me, I applied. Anyway, after filling in all the forms, I got told the news I was expecting, but didnt want to hear. Thank you very much, but your immediate unavailability to work in the US meant they werent interested. Fair enough, I thought that before I started, but anyway…

The next day, I realized their system didnt work on logic, when it offered me roles in Romania, and the Philippines! So I investigated more, found out what was wrong, and attempted to set it up to only offer me UK jobs.

Last element of fun? This morning, I got an email from their computerized system offering me a job. Yes, it was local, in Leeds, and it was definitely something I could do. How do I know that? Its my old job! No, I didnt apply though, as it would mean finishing sometimes at 11.00 at night, and I couldnt get home here, by public transport at that time of night. Nor could I get in for 7.00 am either! But yes, it was funny to get it.

Mind, if someone in Vegas, or Tahoe sees this, and is prepared to take me on in their Sports Books sections, as a diligent, hard worker, yes please. Fine, I’m a Brit, and its a bit of work, but…

Fine, the video. This song came to mind, and when I saw a version, other than Elvis, I felt brave, and gave it a go. Alright, the Presley version is probably better, but finding a live video of it… So you’ll have to suffer this!

Sentimental Journey

The last time I was in Jersey, I went in a betting shop during the evening. Anyone in the UK now, will be reading this, and saying, so what? Simple, back in the early 80’s (either 81, or 82), betting shops in this country closed at 6.30 pm, whether racing was over or not. But in Jersey, strictly part of the UK, but with its own governance, the betting shops, in summer, used to stay open. Ironically, I wasnt actually working in the industry at the time, but I had done so before, so the idea of going in a shop, when they were all shut at home, just amused me. To be honest, I probably only stayed a few minutes, but I could say, I’d been there!

Nowadays, over here, all year long, most betting shops stay open until 10.00 at night, every night! So much for progress lol!

I have this uncertain feeling about how this trip will play out. I’m either going to rediscover the joys of Jersey again, or I suspect, more likely, I’m going to find it so changed that I will regret going back, and not just staying with my memories of my time back then. But equally, this far more mature 50 something, is a very different person to that person, barely in her 20’s the last time she visited. So I might even like those changes!

I’m not sure how much I really remember anyway, I know that when I went back to Rochester last year (a mere 25 years), I didnt really remember anything at all, beyond the lake, and then, I saw it at a different point to before, so…

Oh, the other irony just shows how security issues have changed since then. Back then, in the early 80’s, as I wasnt leaving the UK, I could fly to Jersey without a passport. Nowadays, its still part of the UK, but I will have to show my passport at the airport to get through security, to board the plane…Ah well…

Oh, the video, the first blonde I grew up to adore, long before Jean Harlow came into my life. As is so often the case, the clue is in the blog title!

I believe in Father Christmas

Well, alright, maybe I dont, I’m a bit old for that now, but all the same…its a nice idea?

So here we are, 3 days from the big event, and just 1 more working day to go, tomorrow. Actually, thats a bit of a strange one, given there is no horse racing now in the UK, or Ireland until Boxing Day, but still the gambling goes on. Foreign racing, greyhounds, and virtual racing will keep assaulting the punters through the next 2 days, and indeed those computerised chances to lose (or occasionally win) money, on the machines now in all betting shops. Oh, football and sport betting too, of that I’m sure. Yes, we actually shut on Christmas Day, the only day now that the betting shops actually shut. People will still be betting online though, that is for sure!

Shops used to shut on Good Friday, and these 2 days before Christmas as well, but money nowadays is the main concern, and so the shops are open. Not quite so bad in our place, but not good, all the same!

What am I expecting for Christmas in gifts, no idea. I was expecting the usual choccies and booze routine, but I’m told there has been some ‘out of the box’ thinking done this year, so it will be interesting to see what I get. Something 20’s related might make for a good bet lol!

2014 looks like having an interesting start for me, beginning with the release of my 5th ebook, when I get it back from my wonderful editor, James. The other interesting looking event early in the year, could be me getting to be a hypno-bot, at least for a little while, now that should be fun! More details nearer the time, I suspect.

The video, a Christmas song, a live version from somewhere I will visit in 2014, Albany. Probably my favourite Christmas song in all honesty, probably because of the nature of the feelings, and lyrics

In case anyone hadnt noticed

The Olympics start on Friday, here in the UK, though thankfully London is the opposite end of the country to me! So therefore in the sense of jostling crowds, I’ll miss out on it, phew! I think there is some soccer in Manchester, across the pennines, but thats far enough away to avoid it, even more so given my ‘love’ of that game!

The funny thing is, the Olympic Stadium is only a matter of a couple of miles from where I once lived in London for a couple of years, indeed I left there a few months after the announcement in 2005. And though it might have been fun to say ‘I was there’, in all honesty I’m glad I wont be.

No, I wont be able to avoid the whole thing, I work in a betting related call centre, pretty much all sports, so when you think about it…I’m sure I will see plenty of it at work, and quickly get tired of all the inane questions that shop staff will ask me on a regular basis. Alright, I might be feeling that way already, but…lol

The thing that depresses me the most though, isnt the sport, its the sheer bad taste requests from customers/shops relating to it. I think the worst is being asked for a price for the Queen to be assassinated during the opening ceremony, but believe me, there are plenty of others nearly as bad. You do wonder about the morals, and tastes of some people, seriously you do!

I promise you one thing, unless something amazing happens, this will be the last Olympics posting. unless I do a jaded one after its over lol!

Positivity in this posting, oh thats easy. 8 weeks from now, I will be across the Pond, having a good time with a good friend, or maybe even friends, it certainly will be the latter at some point during the week. And by then, the Olympics will be over, hoorah!

The video, an oldie, but seems apt, given all the athletics there will be over the next few weeks.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rnj80Ha7f2k