Odds Ends Throwaway Society Credit And A Piece Of History

Jan Leeming

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Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

ODDS & ENDS - Throwaway society, credit and a piece of history

Date: 16th January 2011

Although it goes against my principles, I now understand why we have become such a throwaway society. It is hardly worth ever repairing anything.

I took a pair of shoes which needed re-soling and nearly fell over when told that the cost was £25.99. Over the years I have cut down and compromised over many items of clothing but on one I cannot and that is ‘shoes’. Cheap shoes simply cripple me so I had to stump up the money for repair as the shoes were expensive.   Had they been cheap, I’d have binned them. I have to say that the repair was excellent.

When I was working regularly and living near London, I always bought Jourdan shoes and handbags to match. The ‘last’ of their shoes was obviously perfect for my feet – on one occasion I’d gone to London for a function and was checking into the hotel complete with evening gown and then realized I’d left my evening shoes at home. I phoned Jourdan in Knightsbridge and they sent over a pair which fitted perfectly and were as comfortable as slippers – no having to wear them in.  I've always believed in the adage - You get what you pay for and wherever possible, I will buy quality.


I’ve just read a very interesting article on lovemoney.com and it has solved a mystery for me. I can’t be bothered to carry around a host of cards which give me a point on this and two points off that but I do like Airmiles and through BA Club have several times been invited to apply for American Express which carries airmiles on every purchase. I’ve used the same Credit Card for over 40 years and am perfectly happy with it but the temptation of Airmiles was great so I applied and was turned down, not once but twice. Apart from a mortgage in the past, I’ve never owed money, never had a bad debt and always pay my bills and my Credit Card on time.  And I've been a house or flat owner for over 40 years.  Eventually I contacted Credit Expert/Experian who said I could hardly have a higher Credit Rating but that I did not show up on the Electoral Roll (even though I had only just filled in the latest one and have lived in the same place for 8 years). I took this up with the Council and have discovered that our House Number does not exist – nor does it come up on Tom Tom which states that there is no 35. So there you are – and also if your cards are pre 2000 you could be turned down because from 2000 onwards, legislation required lenders and providers to revamp their terms and conditions, to include customer approval for sharing their details with other organisations.


Yesterday, instead of doing the paperwork I’d promised myself to do, I took 3 hours out and watched the Classic El Cid. It was pure indulgence and I loved it. Sadly I looked up El Cid on the internet and found that he wasn’t the paragon of virtue as portrayed in the film.

I was a great fan of Charlton Heston (when I was young, just about our only entertainment was the Cinema and theatre) so most of us had crushes on our famous film stars. And in those days the famous had an air of ‘mystery and mystique’ about them – a mystique which was jealously guarded by the Film Companies.

Some twenty years ago, imagine my joy when I attended an After Premiere party and found myself standing next to Charlton Heston. I made his acquaintance and chatted with him and a press photo was taken of us. Imagine my chagrin the next day when the picture appeared and they’d cut off Charlton. I’d have loved that photo as a keepsake.

BRACELET with a history.

Ten years ago while staying with my friend Kwesi in Durban we went out for a drive on a particularly miserable day and stopping to have a coffee we discovered an auction in the village hall. I love jewellery and there was a small display case with some ‘job lots’ in it. No-one seemed interested in them so I bid and got a mixture of bits and pieces for a very reasonable price. One of the items was a doublel bracelet in fine chain (pinchbeck I think) with two clasps adorned by green gems – too bright to be emeralds, too green to be peridot and I couldn’t think they were glass. However, the great joy was to find an inscription on the back.

The Internet can be wonderful and the other day I looked up the name of the donor of the gift who came from a well-connected family. The site took me to Justin Kirby who is investigating his family history. I emailed him and sent him photos of the bracelet and it looks as though we will find out the provenance of this little bracelet given as a gift in 1809.

If you are interested this is the link

Bye for now,  Jan

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