The year that was by Algernon.
We all know that 2021 is a year most of us would prefer to forget with lockdowns due to COVID outbreaks, working from home for those who work along with other restrictions. But our marvellous politicians tell us it’s all freedom now so it’s not a problem.
2021 was also the year where my father entered his eleventh decade of existence. His birthday was in September. My sisters thought we’d throw a party for him with 20 or 30 of his nearest and dearest. We thought it might be nice to organise congratulatory messages which he could receive, given he was turning 90.
Who can get what is shown here: https://www.nsw.gov.au/congratulatory-messages
All this is handled through the State Members office and two months is required to receive them. I rang his local members office to find out what was required. The young staffer told me it was all easy, just fill in the online form, attach the pertinent proof and they’d do the rest, alternatively drop it into their office or post it. He sent me the link for the online form. No need to contact the Federal member they’d look after everything.
Simple I thought, filled the form in attached the relevant documents and done. Sent in early June so plenty of time.
Then a limo driver thought it OK to not wear a mask whilst driving international flight crews to quarantine. Slow to act and not wanting to impact on the hedonists of the Eastern Suburbs and what passed for normalcy evaporated for 4 and a half months. As time moved on the party was put on ice.
We’d organised for the messages to come to our place and bring them to the party. I made a phone call to local members office in August asking for the change. Once again, no worries.
Over time spoke to a couple of the staffers, all friendly and pleasant.
Anyhow, Dad’s birthday came, no messages, a couple of weeks pass, still no messages. On 28 September 2021, I again rang the Local Members office asking about the Congratulatory messages which had not arrived. The staffer tells me that the only contact that your office had had with my father was back in 2016. They asked me how I had sent the request, where I advised them that I had used your online form and received an acknowledgment by email from your office. He then checked and apparently found the request. They also recalled the telephone conversation in August. He said he would investigate what had happened and would call me back. He never called back.
It would appear to me after that conversation, that the online form with the attachment, is sitting somewhere electronically in Local members office and most likely the request for the Congratulatory messages has not been progressed anywhere.
Beginning of October comes Binchook resigns as Premier, still nothing, by the 5th time to write a blunt letter to the Local Member. Within an hour I receive a call from another sheepish staffer. Wondered if his office should send flowers or something, WTF his birthday had passed. An excuse was that they had his birthday in October not September.
The messages started to come, first from the local state member and the Mayor, a month after his birthday, next came one from his local Federal member and Scotty from Marketing in November. The last ones came from the Premier, Parrothead not Binchook.
A few days later the Governor congratulated him on turning 100. Dad thought it hilarious, more excuses for a sleep. My sisters and I thought given how botched the whole system had been well what the heck! We’ve had a lot of laughs about all of it
We’ve organised his belated 90th for January. Now we see Parrothead is letting COVID rip and a sense of déjà vu ensues.
I might say they’re all Liberals would you expect anything to be organised properly.