The Magnetic Strip Joint

No, it’s got nothing to do with purvey old blokes sat in a pole dancing club…

The (potentially) boring truth is that my debit card died while we were in Spain. First port of blame was the Spanish banking system. Oh how wrong can “one” be? Turns out it only becomes a complicated issue when “one” arrives in the UK.

As soon as we got back where we don´t belong I rang up the number on the reverse of the card, (they all have one) to ask what the score was.

Reply from an “expert” with a wealth of knowledge poking into people’s accounts:

“Well according to our records there’s nothing wrong with your card, what did the machine say?”

“Transaction rejected” (Spanish ATM’s are clever, they speak English too).

“It must be something to do with the last machine you used, I can’t see anything wrong, should be fine now you’re back in the UK.”

So basically I’d been reassured that now we’re in Blighty, it should work as normal?


How totally embarrassing, I was paying for storage and removals, (my shout) there we were sat in the office, and my card was REJECTED again. So she had to put it through the old fashioned way.

When we got back to TT, I phoned the bank again, this time I was put through to someone with almost a whole brain. The lady was very nice and told me there was nothing wrong with my account, but the system was telling her the magnetic strip was damaged…

I was also informed that a new card would be sent out to me immediately which in UK terms means 5 working days. Add a weekend on top. For goodness sake, we’re supposed to be in the technological era, not stuck in the 1950’s.

Really, it could only happen to me. Such a potentially crucial time in our lives and in unreal terms I’m skint. Totally reliant upon Dave and he’s running up a tab…

It’s ok for me, I can scrounge off my other half, but how do people cope if they’ve no-one else to rely on?

In my head case case, hindsight bells rang when I’d been shoving my card in the zip pocket of my handbag along with KEYS. I don’t do big handbags, so the situation will be rectified. Still no need for a BIG designer kitchen sink sack, I’ve cut a card pocket thingy out of an old purse…

Which just goes to prove keys and cards can be happy together without “personal contact” in future. And Spanish banks are reliable…

Well “one” lives and learns.

Still doesn’t rectify the poor service I’ve been forced to high jump through here though…

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