You know it’s summer when …
… the gooseberries appear in one of my regular shops (mmm).
So many delicious summer fruits and berries have artificially-extended seasons that the presence of raspberries and strawberries has become meaningless. Not to mention those that are already in the shops though not yet in season, like blueberries and even blackberries. But the gooseberry season is still genuine, and availability has become woefully intermittent in recent years.
Today I have the first gooseberries of the year, along with other seasonal delicacies. Need some cream to make a fool with them, so I went to Somerfield and bought it, along with a couple of other things. Cash running low, so I ask for cashback, only to find my debitcard declined without explanation. OK, no panic, paid by other means and tried a building society cash machine: also refused.
Good thing it’s lunchtime, then, and the local agency for my bank is open. They tell me the card should’ve been replaced for (nonspecific) security reasons, and I should’ve received a new one back in February. Ahem … noone told me, and my existing card is only one year old and has another two years on it! Anyway, I took out fifty quid cash and they ordered a new card.
So a minor annoyance. But if that had happened when I was away from home (even out of the country), or even just at the wrong time of day/week, it could’ve been seriously annoying. I don’t want to use the creditcard for cash, and there are very few people I could borrow from without huge embarrassment even if they happen to be around.
 Cash withdrawals by UK debitcard are free, but the same thing with a creditcard incurs high charges.