Whilst other youngsters were trying desperately to sneak into pubs for a spot of underage drinking, sadly I was often tuned into Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy on Radio Four. I had absolutely loved it, especially the way it had gently poked fun at some of our British ways. I sympathised with poor old Arthur Dent and his plight, as he had vainly tried to protect his home, first from bulldozers, then from the Vogon Constructor Fleet.
Source of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy video.
I had seen enough from current affair shows of the time, to know, that people really could suddenly find themselves in this type of situation without warning, having been told they should have visited some obscure planning office. The beaurocracy had appeared to be notorious in the seventies and eighties. Things did seem to improve, although I have just watched an interesting video by a South African guy comparing his experiences settling both in Australia and in the UK.
The bane of my life here has been the phone system. (Nowadays however I realise these systems are worldwide.) but Australia had seemed to be ahead of the game. I vividly remember trying to sort out my paperwork and encountering this type of situation for the first time, while I was still in the UK.. You know the kind of thing.
If you are ringing to report a space alien invasion, press 1. If you are unsure which galaxy they come from press two. If they have landed in your garden press 3.
Ok then so I press button 3
Do you have a Medicare/Insurance/ Shoe Size number, press 1 if not press 2.
Please enter this number etc etc.
Well this is what had happened to me (more or less) . After about half an hour of patiently wading my way through options, I had heard.
This office is now closed. Please call between 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday.
I suspect these systems are everywhere now but I have never forgotten this first early encounter.
I really do not think the world needs to worry about alien invasion as the first time they try to make contact with us, I reckon they will hear.
Thank you for contacting us to talk to our leader. Your call is important to us. If you are ringing to talk to our leader about a peace treaty, press 1.
If you need an /skilled/unskilled slave workforce press 2.
If you are invading press 3?
If you intend to settle press 1.
If you intend to wreak chaos and then leave press 2.
Upon pressing button 3 they will hear.
Sorry our office is now closed, we suggest you postpone your invasion plans till Monday. Our office hour are Monday to Friday 10am till 3;30pm.