Sunday Tittle Tattle: Three Things To Tell You

ruth crilly blog

I have three things to tell you, which sounds ominous but isn’t at all. The things I want to tell you about are from the boring, administrative side of life, the side of life that involves finding postage stamps and printing off Amazon returns forms and checking whether your direct debit to British Gas is still working. That kind of stuff. I’ve squished them into one long Sunday Tittle Tattle because they aren’t my usual subject matter – if I wrote about them in standalone posts they’d sound a bit like those American infomercials that you get on the telly!

My first “thing” is Gigaclear. Now this won’t really interest you unless you live in a rural area (UK) and have internet so slow that a pigeon could deliver a message in less time than it takes to send an email. The people at Gigaclear visited my village, which has very slow internet, and did a whole speech about how they are turning the rural internet services around by installing a new type of broadband that goes directly to your property rather than the BT style that stops at a box. Or something. Don’t ask me for the technical specifics, I just wanted to share the fact that I have signed up to it. There has to be a certain proportion of your village that registers interest (you give direct debit details, they don’t take payment until it’s all up and running) and so it depends on how many of your locals want it. Surely everyone wants fast internet these days? Though I just checked my village’s sign-up progress and we only have 5.6% of the required orders! Boooo. They’re all stuck in the past. Mind you, we still have village stocks and an annual tug-of-war contest, so nothing really surprises me. Anyway, worth telling your neighbours about and seeing if anyone wants to get involved – the website is here.

My second potentially boring thing, depending on whether you’re about to buy a new car or not, is Carwow. Carwow is a website that takes your new car order (you select the make and model and then customise your car with every single option available, anything from the colour of the seats to the style of the wheels) and allows dealers to bid their lowest price. I saw an ad for it and Mr AMR (most cynical man I’ve ever met, ever) laughed at me for being so gullible, but when he submitted his request, the lowest offer gave him a 10% saving! He was buying an Audi and all of the dealerships were official Audi ones, so there was nothing dodgy going on…I hope. The dealerships must hate it: the man we originally ordered with thought that he was on the home run with his sale, then the next day Mr AMR rang back with the best offer he’d been emailed and asked them to match it! They did, and gracefully I have to say, but I’m sure they must have a Carwow dartboard in their staff room. They must burn Carwow effigies on their annual bonfire (if, indeed, car dealerships have annual bonfires) and keep little Carwow voodoo dolls in their desk drawers. They must hate Carwow. But it’s definitely worth a try if you’re ordering something new with four wheels (not a pram!) (not a bus!) (not one of those fancy suitcases that go in all directions!) – it saves you having to do that embarrassing haggling thing and also means that – if you knew exactly what you were after – you could do the whole ordering process from home without ever stepping foot in a showroom. Carwow.

Third thing, then you can go back to enjoying your Sunday. Quite possibly, by now, you’ve become so bored that you’ve started to insert heated knives into your earholes, but if you’re still with me and you read my post about minor insomnia a while ago, you’ll know that I was having a few problems getting to sleep. Fortunately solved (touch wood), but one of the changes I made to my evening routine, thanks to many of your very helpful suggestions, was to change the light on my iPhone screen to a “warm” light rather than the “blue” light that it usually emits. There are loads of apps you can get to do this (the blue light is bad for allowing your mind to switch off, apparently) but the iPhone now has a built-in function  – Night Shift – that can automatically set the light to “warm” between certain times of the day. I’ve set mine from 8pm to 8am. The warm light also makes it a lot more difficult to actually read anything on the phone, I’ve found – browsing The Outnet far less enjoyable. Financial bonus, there. You can find the “Night Shift” button on the iPhone if you swipe up on the home screen to get that bank of quick access buttons. You know, where the torch is and the camera and the calculator. Or are they just my three most-used tools?

Right: as you were. Do enjoy the rest of the weekend. I feel as though these Sunday Tittle Tattles are turning into lengthy old affairs, recently. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Next week, maybe it’ll just be pictures of pets. I miss those posts…

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