The Great Mobile Phone Decision has been made - and executed this morning. No messing about. A lovely white Samsung Galaxy S5 will be delivered to me on Friday 11th April, which is incidentally the very day it gets its general release.
I went online, and did the deal with Vodafone. I was four months ahead of the end of my existing 24 month contract, and hadn't yet reached my proper upgrade date of 26th May. I was prepared to stump up £84 to cover the remaining four months' payments on my old phone, the expected penalty for terminating a contract early. I was looking at a fresh contract at £37 per month for 24 months, with double the Internet usage allowance that I presently have.
What I actually secured was a free phone with no £84 penalty to pay up front. The advisor who dealt with me simply added four months to the new contract, so that in fact it's a 28 month contract starting immediately and lasting until September 2016. Unless of course I upgrade again three months before it ends.
So that's £37 a month henceforth, but I get a cutting-edge phone, with the larger screen that I wanted. And the advisor chucked in three months of free Internet usage as a starter perk, valid up to 11 July - which will be highly convenient for my three-week Welsh Tour in May and June! In other words, I can have as much Holiday Internet as I want, quite independently of any Wi-fi that may be available. Very useful indeed.
I've stuck with a 3G plan, and not paid for 4G. The S5 is 4G-ready, but for now it's confined to big cities, and I don't live in one. Nor is 4G available in the sticks, especially where I go caravanning. It might be rolled out widely enough by 2016 to make adoption worthwhile, but meanwhile it makes no sense at all to pay for what one cannot use.
The £37 a month deal also requires me to trade in my old S2 phone. Well, that's no problem. I'm not sentimental about it. It has served me well, and I am grateful; but it's not a pet, a little personality that might be hurt at my callous abandonment. I know one can get quite choked up about saying farewell to objects so useful, so dependable, and so faithful that they have become friends. I would feel like that where Fiona is concerned. But not in this case. It's just a phone.
The extra monthly cost, compared to what I pay now, will be £16: which is 50p a day more. It doesn't make much of an impact on my budget, and it hasn't altered my projected savings plans one whit.
There are now two important things to do. One is to buy a 64GB microSD card, to transfer my music, photos and digital Ordnance Survey maps onto. I want to have all that loaded up in my new phone within hours of its arrival. I'd better get that today, on my way into Brighton.
The other is to think of a name for my new phone. Shall it be Eloise again? Or something else? Honestly, it's like choosing a name for a freshly-born baby girl!
I've decided already on what my new phone will be called: Demelza.