Foiled at the Pumps My Life 16 SEP 2010

This morning I was once again foiled at the pumps, but not by the lack of petrol attendants as has been the case over the last two weeks. No, as the guy who assisted me clarified, while the strike may very well be continuing on the television, the reality is that a lot of the guys on the ground have begun to return to work because simply put, two weeks off with no pay at that particular income level is not a particularly easy thing to do!

I had left home a couple of minutes later than per usual thanks to me wanting to run some updates on my Ubuntu machines and the need to console poor old Chantelle who is so frustrated because she can’t get a good night’s rest at the moment, meaning that the last thing I wanted to see as I pulled out of the parking lot was an empty fuel tank.

Great. Getting petrol in the early hours (i.e. 06:15) has not been a particularly smooth process this last little while, and so I thought I would hit a petrol station I don’t normally use, the BP garage on the corner by the Strand train station. And I was in luck – or so I thought – because as I approached I saw a petrol attendant in uniform, ready to serve.

Fantastic. So the petrol went in, I struck up conversation and finally whipped out my debit card to complete the transaction.

Except the stupid card reader didn’t want to connect. Three times. No problem, we’ll just use the different type of card machine in the office. No luck either. Three times again.

Sigh, so now I was in need of an ATM, the one thing that this petrol station doesn’t have going for it. Meaning that I needed to leave my car where it was standing and trot around the corner and down the road where there happened to be a Nedbank ATM available.

Brilliant. So out spewed the cash, which I carefully guarded from a rambling hobo lady who seemed intent on making as much colourful commentary as possible, not to anyone in particular mind you, but loud enough for the whole world to hear her mutterings.

Still, I made it back to the petrol station, paid the money, jumped in the car and was off – the entire incident wasting a rather agonising twenty minutes of my life.


But at least my Getz had a full tummy out of all of this! :)

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.