Amazon Won’t Take My Money

Today was the day I had my day-long letter-writing workshop. I didn’t have enough interest to do it last year, so it had been two years since I taught it. I spent a lot of time trying to upgrade my curriculum. Of course, during the day I thought of lots of other ways to improve it.

Anyway, I think it went pretty well. I had one student who was less cooperative than the others, but we made it through. I always end up with making envelopes, which almost everyone enjoys. I even got a few made myself!

It rained on and off all day, which kept temperatures low but meant my students couldn’t have their recess or lunch outside. I think they were all a little stir-crazy by the time they went home.

And then there was my little scuffle with Amazon UK. Years ago—like at least a decade ago—I started trying to find a hymn that I sang and enjoyed as a kid. The name of the hymn (because I know some of you will ask) is “At Even, Ere the Sun Was Set.” It is apparently unknown here in the US.

I remembered the hymnbook we used overseas, and I found a used one online, and ordered it from Ireland. When it arrived, I was so happy. I found the hymn. I sat down to play it. It was the wrong tune. I have spent many hours over the years trying to locate the “right” tune. I failed. However, since I have a good ear, I learned how to play it on the autoharp. I don’t feel that I can teach it to the people at church though without sheet music for them to follow.

So my quest continues. The other day on Facebook I asked people to comment with favorite hymns, and my English friend Adrienne mentioned that very same hymn (she was at the same boarding school as me back in the day). I told her about my troubles finding the right tune, so she sent me what she hoped was the right tune, but it was in fact the one that I have found multiple times. That tune is called Angelus. Further research today turned up an alternate tune named Abend. That is also not the tune we used.

So I tried to see if I could find any recordings using the right tune, and to my astonishment I succeeded. There is a track on the album titled “Joy to the World” by the London Emmanuel Choir, and on that track the choir sings “At Even, Ere the Sun Was Set” to the right tune (there is a long enough sample to tell). However, it is only available through Amazon UK.

No problem, right? I could download the MP3 for only 59 pence, and they accept all major credit and debit cards. Except they don’t. They turned down both of my debit cards and my Mastercard because they weren’t linked to a “local” bank. I wouldn’t even need to download the song if the description included the name of the tune, but it doesn’t.

I wasted way too much of my time trying to get Amazon UK to take my money and let me have the song so I could see if there was a mention of the name of the tune. I never succeeded. So I am still in the dark! Years of effort and still no result. *sigh* At least I can play and sing it for myself.



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