Monday 5th July

I spend the morning writing and catching up on work after being away in the US last week. In the afternoon I have two appointments with banks in order to arrange a mortgage. The mortgage adviser for Natwest is 20-minutes late, but the lady offers a valid excuse and is very professional as we discuss trackers, deposits, endowments and so forth. To be honest, I just need to know how much I am going to have to shell out each month.

The second, Santander, is the re-branded Abbey National with whom I had a mortgage with for nearly a decade when I owned a flat in London. I had no problems with them then, but this afternoon they are amateurs. Obviously competency was another victim of the credit crunch

 The adviser has turned up at the wrong branch and I can hear the entire telephone conversation on the loudspeaker. After 30 minutes of waiting and deleting the 400+ superannuated messages on my Blackberry. Finally, a member of staff informs me that the adviser’s previous appointment has overrun. I politely but firmly ask him to tell me the truth and that I heard the entire debacle soundtracking the empty branch. He apologizes for the BS and tells me that I have to walk down to the other branch. Of course, when I get there, the confused adviser has walked up to the branch I have just come from, a miscommunication so predictable that I am not surprised. When he does grace me with his presence, I feel as if I am talking to an 18-year old with half is mind calculating my mortgage, the other half how many pints he is going to sink at the pub tonight.

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