Saturday, 4 August 2007

Sunny, beach holiday blues...

Is it just me or am I having a really bad run of luck? I know it's nothing catastrophic and I know there's people out there going through worse, but! I'm beginning to feel like I'm cursed at the moment...

Tomorrow I leave for Newquay for a holiday I've had booked since March. It's the longest I've ever had a holiday planned in my life, and in theory, having given myself so much time to prepare, everything should go smoothly, right?

The trip is for two weeks and it's supposed to be a relaxing reunion of old friends mingled with some attempts at surfing. In fact, I've been so looking forward to the trying-to-surf part that I've pre-booked the equipment for the whole two weeks.

The main goal of this trip was always to de-stress, and given some recent events in my personal life, it couldn't have come along at a better time.

So, what could go wrong?

Well, two weeks ago I woke up with a crick in my neck which took two days to go away. Not a big deal (other than how surprisingly painful it was), these things happen from time to time, after all. Bizarrely, though, it decided to return this week as I was leaving a particularly stressful day at work. By the time I'd ridden the tube home my neck was killing me again. As I write this, four days later, I'm still turning my whole upper-body to look at things, like some badly designed robot. What the hell?

A crick in the neck, it turns out, is a stretched ligament which can take 10 - 14 days to heal fully, if you're sensible. I don't remember not being sensible at any point, but in some unknown way I must have agitated it, and it's decided to come back. With a vengeance. I'm hoping to prove medical science wrong, but even the most optimistic person has to admit that it puts a bit of a dampener on my ambition of spending the next two weeks surfing - I don't think it's covered under 'sensible'. (I have images of damaging it further and being, not only a self-conscious amateur, but the only surfer in a neck-brace.)

Now, ok, that's annoying, but when you add the following to the mix, you can understand why I'm feeling particularly unlucky at the moment: Last week I discovered that someone in Croatia has stolen £865 ($1,740) from my bank account using a fake debit card.

All my holiday money.

Bloody hell. I've never even been to Croatia, let alone knowingly shared my PIN number with someone from there, and yet I'm told they must have gotten it somehow. Still, thankfully I should get my money back. The only problem is that it's going to take the HSBC several weeks to investigate my claim. Brilliant, except, if you recall, I leave tomorrow.

All is not lost, in theory, as I still have my overdraft from my long gone student days and some kindly friends have even offered to lend me money. Again, fantastic, except I had to cancel my debit card when I reported the fraud, so I no longer have any access to any money.

Luckily I gave the HSBC a week's notice to send me my replacement, which was just long enough for me to get it before I left, or at least it would have been if there didn't happen to be a mail strike on this week.

No card, no money, and I'm off tomorrow morning.

Oh, and I did I mention the shark?

So much for planning in advance. Next time I'm booking it last minute and flying by the seat of my pants. In fact, for my next holiday I might just turn up at the train station/airport blindfolded and ask the person behind the desk to surprise me. As a friend once said to me; if you don't make any plans, nothing can technically go 'wrong'.

I know there are worse things happening out there, and you might well be going through much more difficult things yourself, but considering how much I've been looking forward to de-stressing over the next two weeks, I can't help but feel the irony.

2 comments:

Jason Powell said...

Sh*t! That sucks, dude. The best-laid plans indeed.

Glad to hear that you'll eventually get the money back, at least.

Johnny Walker said...

Hi Jason, thanks for the commiserations. It was pretty annoying, and I'm still dangerously low on cash, but the holiday was still just what I needed. Feeling fully refreshed and great!