Interesting times

10 Sep

Many of us have heard the so-called Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times.”

We are, all around the globe, living in interesting times. In the US, even though it’s still almost fourteen full months to election day, the campaigning is already in full force.

Fundamentalism is the word of the day, when you have presidential candidate Mike Huckabee physically present to cheer bigoted asshole Kim Davis, bemoaning the oppression and persecutions of Christians…in an overwhelmingly Christian country, as well as baldly stating that he, too, would break federal law to ‘uphold his Christian convictions’–at the expense of other US citizens’, and fellow human beings’, rights.¹

Incredibly biased corporate media is another word of the day, when you have CNN actually approving the publication of a headline that compares Kim Davis to Rosa Parks. (Cue incoherent sounds of rage here.) Even if the article itself explains why such an assertion is, at the very least, hypocritical, using that as clickbait is…rage inducing.

There is more, so much more, in the wider world, that makes our present interesting.

Then, there’s the personal.

~ * ~

I’ve mentioned here before my financial struggles.

I am happy to report that, just last week, I was offered a promotion at work. When all is said and done, I’ll take home about $200 a month more than I do right now. Though I’m replacing a manager, I am to be a mere supervisor. Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for the raise, even if the company is saving quite a bit of money on me. Unless something else major breaks around here (please, please, don’t), I should be able to pay my current debts sometime by the end of next year, and, perhaps, be able to actually, you know, save a few dollars every paycheck.

Retirement? Please.

Still, this is a good thing.

What’s not so good is that I’m training for this new position–of which I knew absolutely nothing up until last week;  a position with very hard, critical deadlines every week, and which I must have mastered enough to fly solo by September 25th–while still performing the duties of my current position, full time, until September 18th. I am training my own replacement, for one week, starting September 14th. I am covering one critical function for another position from September 14th through the 25th. I am covering yet another position for at least two, probably three weeks, starting on September 23rd.

Has your head asploded yet?

~ * ~

Then there’s the fact that I’ve been in the process to refinance my house for the past month. If the loan goes through with the current numbers, I would lower my mortgage payment enough that, perhaps, I won’t need a second job after all, and where, perhaps, I could (again, if nothing else major breaks around here) start saving sometime early next year.

Everything was going along swimmingly, until the title company found a lien that my HOA has placed on my property. Interestingly, it’s a lien for a sum I paid, in full, with a credit card, over two years ago. We have since, unfortunately, changed management companies and lawyers for same, and, surprise, surprise, there’s no record on their end that I did, in fact, pay in full.

Also interestingly, during the two years that I’ve, supposedly, in their ledgers, been in arrears, I’ve received zero communication on the matter from the HOA.

And don’t get me started on the fact that, despite the association documents not providing for this (and the over ninety percent majority required to change those documents), the management company has been charging interest for that whole period.

So now, if I want to meet the new loan company’s deadline to get my locked interest rate, I need to pay almost $500 I do not owe, and hope there’s enough time for the rest of the procedure to happen on time.

Or I could forget the loan for now, and call a lawyer–which will probably cost me about that sum for two hours’ worth of, you know, lawyering, to try and clear all that crap for me, and then reapply for the loan.

Did I mention I don’t have $100, let alone $500?²

~ * ~

Add in the fact that the mother of one of my sisters in law died, after a very long, very courageous fight against cancer, on August 23rd. S, my sister in law, has been hit very hard, torn between relief that her mother is no longer suffering, and overwhelming grief.

My own mother, despite praying for her pain to be over, has been quite shaken by this–my brother has been married for over thirty years, and the two had been fairly close for a good chunk of that time.

Then, just last week, my mother had to put her dog to sleep. It may seem callous to mention this in the same post, but given my mother’s age (she turned eighty on May 21 this year), and character, it’s another heavy blow.

I’m worried about her, and wish I could do something tangible to help her through this time–and I’m four thousand plus miles away.³

Interesting times indeed.

~ * ~

Despite all of the above whining, I am aware of just how lucky I am. I may be living check to check (or somewhat behind that), but at least I’m gainfully employed. I am reasonably healthy for a person my age–besides the depression, that is, but hey. Both my adult children are healthy, both are decent people, reasonably happy.

And despite all of the current political, religions, and racial crap going on all over the world, life could be always be much worse.

So I am thankful my life is this good.

The whining, I am aware, is also a privilege.

~ * ~

¹ Which, as commenter andarae pointed out here, is pretty much the opposite of Christ’s actual message.

² If I did, I would have already replaced the dead washing machine, called the AC guys, and had someone over to take care of the overgrown jungle that is my back yard. Not to mention the bill–already paid!–from the doctor’s office, for an early April appointment. And don’t remind me that the car’s insurance expires on September 28th, please.

³ I could have, back in 1995, chosen to return to Mexico with my children. I didn’t, and while I do not regret my choices, as they have given my offspring opportunities they wouldn’t have had otherwise, there are times the distance hurts. This is one of them.

18 Responses to “Interesting times”

  1. willaful 10/09/2015 at 3:12 PM #

    Ugh, I’m sorry you’re having to deal with this unfair and anxiety-producing crap. Have you considered trying one of the websites that does small loans? I’ve heard good things about them.

    • azteclady 10/09/2015 at 3:25 PM #

      Great timing. I just got off the phone with the management company. Apparently, the great state of Florida does not require that the homeowner be informed when a lien is placed on their property–or of the lawyer fees for doing so that are now part of the account.

      So while I did bring my account up to date before the lien was placed, said lien won’t be lifted until I pay the whole shot.

      The only way I can do this on time for the refinancing deadline is to use a credit card–for which they’ll charge me yet another fee. Oh, and they don’t guarantee that the process would be done in time anyway.

      I just want to cry somewhere in a corner.

      • azteclady 10/09/2015 at 3:28 PM #

        I particularly enjoyed having the new property manager threaten me with further charges, which apparently she can pile on, since I’ve paid my HOA erratically (read: when there was money for it after mortgage, utilities and food).

    • azteclady 11/09/2015 at 8:05 AM #

      My apologies, Willa. I was so upset yesterday I didn’t even thank you for your good wishes.

      Seriously, thank you.

  2. Kat 11/09/2015 at 3:57 AM #

    I hope this is all sorted in your favour, AZ. I can’t believe they’re making you pay interest on something you don’t owe plus threatening you with more penalties. 😦

    • azteclady 11/09/2015 at 8:04 AM #

      Ah but see, filing a lien requires a lawyer, and they charge the lawyer’s fees to the homeowner. Unfortunately, since they are not required to inform the homeowner that they filed a lien, I didn’t know about the lawyer’s fees. Between those fees, and the interest from before I brought the account up to date, plus interest on that sum for over twenty months…


    • azteclady 11/09/2015 at 8:06 AM #

      And thank you as well, Kat. Sorry I’m so grumpy about this.

  3. Carolyn 11/09/2015 at 11:28 AM #

    I have an abiding hate for HOAs. I’ve never had one, thank the Lord, and now never will. All I ever hear about them is bad, from not letting folks fly a flag to serious problems like yours.

    (((hugs))) Az. I hope it all works out for you.

    • azteclady 11/09/2015 at 12:37 PM #

      Thank you, Carolyn, I am hoping it will all work out in the long run.

      As another friend told me, a lower mortgage will ensure I won’t ever again fall behind on those HOA dues.

  4. SuperWendy 11/09/2015 at 9:28 PM #

    Yeah. HOA’s are the devil. Carolyn is correct. Who has EVER heard anything “good” EVER about a HOA?! May wee tiny devils show up while they sleep and poke them with wee tiny pitchforks.

  5. Bona 15/09/2015 at 5:55 AM #

    It’s sad to hear those news from you. I hope everything comes out all right in the end. I wish I knew how to help you, but those rules about a HOA and all that it’s something too complex for me.
    So, I prefer to talk about the ‘interesting times’ that I just can’t understand.
    You’re paid for a job, you perform the duties of that job.
    Last week an air hostess was suspended because she didn’t want to serve alcohol. That’s part of her job and if she didn’t do it, another flight attendant had to do it. I guess she’s going to be transformed in another heroine.
    I’m not a religious person, so perhaps there’s something in all these news that I just don’t understand.
    But I can imagine certain things in my job that could be against my personal beliefs and cause me conscience problems. If that were the case, I would either do my job, and try to ignore my personal wounded feelings or I’d try to find a different position in the same line of work. But I would never expect to keep my job and earn a salary in exchange of not fulfilling my duties.

    • azteclady 15/09/2015 at 7:18 AM #

      I agree with you, one hundred percent. If your religious convictions don’t let you perform your job, think about doing something else.

      Over in the US, there are laws to accommodate some religious preferences and needs, but theoretically, such accommodations should not interfere with the job, or with other people’s rights and needs.

      I doubt that Ms Stanley, the Muslim flight attendant, will ever achieve the same level of martyrdom/celebrity that Davis has–for the simple reason that the fundamentalists in the US are only concerned with the ‘religious freedom’ of Christians.

      The antiSemite and antiMuslim sentiment here is strong.

  6. Art Kaufmann 28/09/2015 at 10:11 PM #

    Ouch! Sorry things are piling up. So often, it’s the death-of-a-thousand-cuts that gets us down. We can deal with the big things, but the little… ugh. Hope the new position is working for you!

    • azteclady 28/09/2015 at 10:14 PM #

      Art! *hug* How are you doing? How’s everyone over there?

      Things are still crazy around here, but I know they could be a lot worse, and they seem to be heading towards better (picture me crossing my fingers and toes, and trying not to jinx anything–superstitious? you bet!).

      Hoping to come up for air soon, and post something resembling an update.

      • Art Kaufmann 28/09/2015 at 10:38 PM #

        Plenty to keep us busy here. G is in his 2nd year and slogging through. Z is a freshman at UCLA and may have an internship as a political cartoonist with the school paper. Work improves slowly.

        Glad to hear that there’s something bright on the horizon for you. Lots of hugs and I’ll cross my fingers for you, too!


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