Comments: We come of age

Alas, a depressing read. Nevertheless, congratulations on the milestone.

Ageing, failing... they come to all of us. It is only suddenly that we realize we are further down the path than we thought.

I wonder why stage 3 is not "Dependence."

Royal Mail could learn a thing or two from DPD (which is owned by the French state postal service).

Posted by Tim W on 4 January, 2021 at 10:13 AM



Well done Mr BW!

Post Office? One word - Privatisation!

Maybe this year will bring a new desktop - if not better Internet speeds, or a change in policy in Government. Hmmm, see yesterday's comments about Common Sense, Joined-Up-Thinking, and Total Lack!

Posted by Sharon on 4 January, 2021 at 1:15 PM

'Ageing, failing and baffling technology and software...'

Sadly very true. We have an ongoing joke at work as our excellent admin is only 24 years of age and she frequently refers to us as elderly technophobes when we request her help. But it contains a large grain of truth and some of the 'elderly she refers to are in their mid forties!!

I think my mother is somewhere between 2 and 3 but is battling to regain her independence. Hopefully a move to suitable accommodation will help but it is sad she she will have to leave her home of sixteen years.

Posted by delcatto on 4 January, 2021 at 6:53 PM

I'll raise a glass in congratulation!
(and your blog is now old enough to join me)

Posted by diamond geezer on 4 January, 2021 at 8:09 PM

My daughter now drives for DPD. She's bought her own van so that she doesn't have to rent one from them. She doesn't get paid for any parcels that she doesn't deliver so it's in her own interest to deliver them all. Why have you not sorted out your laptop if it's been there since May? You're running out of warranty time.....

Posted by allotmentqueen on 5 January, 2021 at 1:06 AM

What BW doesn't mention is that in the last couple of days of snow she has been in the greenhouse planting up over 1000 bulbs.

Posted by Mr BW on 5 January, 2021 at 7:57 AM

Oh and HNY to everyone.
It will get better.

Posted by Mr BW on 5 January, 2021 at 7:59 AM

AQ - it's a desktop, and luckily has a 3 year warranty. Why not yet set up?
Try downloading anything reliably on a non-stable frequently sub-1MB internet connection, without access to passwords (they are 300 miles away), when existing software will not work on Windows 10 (and in some cases no longer exists), when we've had a multitude of other demands on our available money and time... plus, the old one ain't (completely) broken yet ;)

I'd be interested in any inside stories on DPD... for instance, how much self-employed drivers are paid to deliver each parcel, and whether the 'you cannot deliver until the beginning of the time slot given to the customer' is to stop speeding.

Posted by Blue Witch on 5 January, 2021 at 9:01 AM

Sharon - I think that RM's problem is that they are still Union Driven, with a lot of long-timers who will never give up the 'rights' they have worked/waited for (eg those who have been there longest get to choose their leave days before newer starters, and when 'desirable' rounds/'walks' come up, first refusal goes to the longest serving).

It's like the NHS, TfL and all sorts of other large, dinosaur organisations (either still public or once-public) - too big and too historical to be able to be properly functional in the 21st century, and constrained by their own pasts, which limit their abiity to change.

Posted by Blue Witch on 5 January, 2021 at 9:28 AM

Passwords - it really is impossible these days to do without a password manager. They are then secure and accessible anywhere. Simples! (For the record, I use Roboform, but many others are available.)

Posted by Tim W on 5 January, 2021 at 3:09 PM

Wow has it been that long well done BW . Wondering how long I’ve been reading? Always interesting, and there’s usually cats 😘😘

Posted by Ambermoggie on 5 January, 2021 at 5:23 PM

Passwords - I have a little book with them all in. I'm sure you could manage that.

DPD - they get paid (I think) £2 per delivery. If they don't deliver they don't get paid. Computer gives them a schedule which they can (if they know their patch) over-write before they set off but if you spend 45 mins rewriting your schedule, do you end up 50 mins behind on your deliveries... Swings and roundabouts. Even with re-programming their handsets won't let them deliver ahead of time. However also... not all drivers are employed by DPD themselves. Some of them are employees of franchisees of DPD. You won't be able to tell the difference. So they are under a further level of 'do what you're told'.

Posted by allotmentqueen on 15 January, 2021 at 12:56 AM

Interesting AQ, thanks. For several months when we first moved in, our DPD parcels were repeatedly delivered to a house with a similar name, but 4 miles away (even though that has a quite different postcode) or not delivered. Turned out that our house had been 'mapped' to the wrong location on the electronic system, and the drivers could either mis-deliver and leave us to sort it out, or fail to deliver, but weren't allowed to detour to us even if they knew where we were. Eventually one sensible driver sorted it by making his supervisor re-map the address correctly.

The friendly local Yodel driver told me that Yodel employs drivers in areas (like ours) where self-employed individuals wouldn't be able to make a living, so won't take the routes. He said that a fast driver on an urban/suburban round who is self-employed can earn more by Wednesday lunchtime as he earns for doing a 6 day week. I suggested that he might get sick and holiday pay that might redress some of the balance, but was then told he was on a zero hours contract.

Posted by Blue Witch on 15 January, 2021 at 8:37 AM