Category Archives: Business

Have You Ever Tried to Change Your Name?

Well, I attempted to change my name from my married name of Mouafi back to my maiden name ‘Lorraine Penn’.

My banking account was a breeze; just showed my birth and current marriage certificate and bingo I now have my new account.

Centrelink was another story. The message that greets you when you walk into the office ‘in line or online’.

The trouble with online is you can’t do everything that is required, especially when I am trying to change my name back to maiden name. After going online to change my bank account name details via MyGov, which isn’t instant. I phoned Centrelink’s call centre and the details were changed, but I still had to go to Centrelink to verify my details and to get in that never-ending queue just to prove it is I.

My arrival time at Centrelink Office was 2.25pm I got to see a Centrelink person at 3.40pm, after being asked to wait in the green chairs area.

Needless to say, the Centrelink person couldn’t change my Medicare details, as it is a different department. Back in the bloody queue again, this time I had progressed to the red chairs to wait for another 15 minutes before the Medicare person called out my new name.

One process of name change completed in 1hr and 20 minutes via a Government Department.

It will be another month before I attempt to change my license; I need to recover from today’s experience.

Bottle of Galliano Eased the Problem

It was the early eighties and I was working as an Accountant for a Computer Bureau. Our main clients were the Police and Broadway Credit Unions; we handled their payrolls.

It was during one of these payroll runs when things went haywire with a system crash, leaving no alternative than to panic! Geoff, Computer Bureau Manager panicked! It is not much fun having to advise the Police their pays will be delayed.

I remembered having a Christmas gift sent to me from a client with a note “In times of emergency make a coffee with a dash of the enclosed Galliano to ease the problem”.

With a smile on my face, I dropped into Geoff’s office and gave him the replenishing Galliano coffee and left.

About five minutes later, the intercom ran, it was a most grateful Geoff asking for another special coffee.

The trouble was explaining about ‘the special coffee’ to Fred, Managing Director who had decided to drop into my office right on receiving Geoff’s call.

Fred said; “What are you up to Lorraine?”

“I am just trying to sort out a payroll problem by making Geoff a coffee”.

Geoff rang again saying; “waiting for the special coffee, can I have another?” “Sure Geoff, in a minute I am talking to Fred”. Geoff replied “Don’t give him one, they are our secret”

“OK Lorraine you are up to something, what is it?”

I opened my desk draw exposing the Galliano and said; “coffee Fred?” He responded with “Yes please!”

Sydney Transport


On one of my trips to Sydney for a business related educational event, the flight leaving my hometown of Coffs Harbour was delayed 15 minutes due to Mascot Airport having flight allocation issues.

This wasn’t a problem as I had caught the earlier flight due to the possibility of delays.

On arrival at Sydney Domestic Terminal, I took the train into the city. What an experience this was in an overcrowded train with everyone immersed in their iPods, iPhones, computers, papers, and books. Not a friendly face anywhere to be seen.

I managed to see a vacant seat upstairs in the train, but it was in the middle of a three-seater chair. So I asked the lady who was the nearest to the aisle; “excuse me can I get past you?” She didn’t even look up from her book and said; “you could find another seat”. Welcome to Sydney’s commuters’!

Her huffing and puffing about the annoyance of someone sitting next to her didn’t deter me.

After leaving the train it was a bus trip downtown, another unwelcoming situation the buses are cashless and you need a prepaid ticket! What a wonderful customer friendly town;

Thankfully my educational event was worthwhile, the return flight was on time and a friendly husband was waiting for me at Coffs Harbour Airport.