Tuesday, 2 February 2016
I took a numbered ticket from the machine....and waited...about 45 minutes, only to be informed by the cashier when it was my turn that they had no GBP in stock. I have never experienced this before so I was quite surprised. I asked if they could get some for me, but they said they weren't ordering anymore foreign currency at the moment.
I think this has something to do with the present government not wanting money to leave the country, but for goodness sake...I only wanted a small amount.
Today I popped into Milas for an appointment with my hairdresser at 9am. As usual a lovely wash, cut and blow dry, for which he charged me 10 lira...just over £2. I always feel happy when I've had my hair done so decided I would brave the queues at the post office to see if I could get some currency there.
There was indeed a long queue which stretched out of the door, so to avoid wasting time I asked at the information desk if they had GBP in stock. The answer was yes and I joined the queue. Half an hour later when I reached the cashier I was informed they had none. I was fuming.
I then went to HSBC bank and asked the security man to check if they had GBP, which he did. He said they had some and would I take a ticket and queue. 35 minutes later the cashier asked how much I wanted and I told him. He asked if I had an account with them and I said I didn't but my bank had no currency. He said he was very sorry but they were only changing currency for their customers at the present time. Aargh!
Next I went to Akbank and a man with a "Manager" tag on his jacket was standing just inside the door. I asked him if he had GBP in stock and he said yes. I explained that my bank had none and showed him my debit card (which I don't think he looked at) and he told me to take a ticket and join the queue.
30 minutes later on reaching the cashier I produced my card and asked the cashier for the currency. He said he couldn't accept my card as I was not one of their customers. I asked him to check with the manager as I had already spoken to him. The manager came over and I showed him my card and he confirmed that it wouldn't be acceptable. Clearly he had NOT looked at it or listened to me when I spoke to him before. He said I should take money from an ATM, come back, take another ticket and join the queue. By now I had smoke coming out of my ears and had had more than enough of queues.
Meanwhile Kaya had been trying to sort out our government health insurance. I had been trying to pay our monthly subscription online but kept being informed there was no debt. On checking this out it seems that our insurance had "run out"...and they had given us no warning...so all the paperwork has to be completed and submitted again. Kaya has been there for the best part of today.
Finally, I thought I would pop into my own bank again on the off chance that they may just have some GBP after all. I asked the security man to check and he said they had around £200 in stock. So I took a ticket...and joined the queue...and waited. It was coming up to lunchtime closing so I actually wondered if I would be served, but I was just in time. It turned out that in fact they only had £70 in stock, so I took it anyway.
A whole morning wasted for £70. I really can think of better ways to spend my time!