Future Shock

The credit card is the future shock in our little world. Purchases made now lie in wait, and will pounce in the not so distant future to devour every dollar and cent they can find. And if they are not fed their fill, they will lay claim to our unborn dollars. In Canada the interest rate is 19% or higher. That is why I diligently monitor the credit card purchases as they gather strength just outside our door. The big bad wolf would blow our houses down if it could, and feast upon us without a thought for our loss, distress and pain. Banks are corporations, corporations are not human; corporations are a dangerous non-human species.

It was cold outside when we got up this morning. But thanks to Attila’s determined efforts, keeping the fires burning almost none-stop, between the masonry heater upstairs and the little wood stove downstairs. This morning the temperature by the heater was 21C! This is a record high, when the temperature outside is so very low, -31C. This morning Attila mentioned that he is very glad that he had time to dig out more firewood last Sunday!

This kind of weather is totally unforgiving. We do not drink, with good reason. An error in judgement could have dire consequences when spending a short time outdoors, or without heat indoors. We need to keep on our toes, stay alert and always aware. It is crucial to keep candles, food, warm clothing, and blankets in vehicles when travelling, even for relatively short distances. Personally, I chose not to run around the country side on a snowmobile; every year lives are lost where we live, where poor judgement or just plain bad luck has ended what was intended to be a good time. That is just us though, always cautious by choice.

I will be putting in an order for fuel delivery next week, for the little house in the city. This is a bit earlier in the year than usual, but it has been a very cold winter. Attila and I discussed adding insulation to the above grade basement walls this renovation season, in hopes of recouping the investment on fuel savings. We shall see if we have enough in the way of renovation funds to tackle the issue this year. We have lots of work to be done that will not require any significant investments, and if needs be will spend our time on those projects.

Mom is leaving tomorrow, for her drive back to Canada from Florida. Where she lives in the Niagara region the temperatures are much higher than they are here. Still, it seems to me it will be a shock to arrive home to frigid weather. Bring some of the warm home with you, please Mom!

I have been corresponding with the journalist from the glossy magazine, and he will be coming out to photograph the maple syrup spile, on of those used by my Grandparents all their lives, to make domestic maple syrup. How I miss those days, when my Grandparents were still alive, and a part of everyday experience!

Worldly Distractions

Weather

Thursday:
SNOW SQUALL WATCH IN EFFECT
-16°C
Date: 1:05 PM EST Thursday 27 February 2014
Condition: Light Snow
Pressure: 100.4 kPa
Visibility: 6 km
Temperature: -15.5°C
Dewpoint: -21.2°C
Humidity: 62%
Wind: W 17 gust 35 km/h
Wind Chill: -24

Friday:
-31°C
°C °F
Date: 6:00 AM EST Friday 28 February 2014
Condition: Clear
Pressure: 102.6 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -31.2°C
Dewpoint: -34.4°C
Humidity: 74%
Wind: SSE 4 km/h
Wind Chill: -36

Quote

“To know what you prefer instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive.”
Robert Louis Stevenson
1850 – 1894

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8 Responses to Future Shock

  1. Bex says:

    The brilliant advice that I only learned late in life was “only put on your credit card what you can pay off at the end of the month.” This way, you never have to worry about the interest rate on any card. You don’t pay interest because you pay it off every month. This concept has saved my life. I was a hopeless spendaholic before around the mid to late 1990s and then we had a crisis occur (Paul lost his lobster boat in a storm) and I had to lay out on the table all my finances, we had to remortgage our house (which had been paid off) and it all was too nasty. It was then that this advice above came to the forefront of my brain and since I’ve started paying off credit cards every month, those interest rates are one less thing to worry about.

  2. Maggie says:

    It is brilliant advice Bex! That is the only way I have used credit cards, my whole life long. In fact, about 18 years ago I had two credit cards, and made the necessary payment to the wrong one. That is when I learned that when you carry a balance, which I mistakenly did for the first time in my life, you pay interest on the the total amount owing from the very moment it is charged to the card! What a shock that was! The purchase had been a large one, and the interest was a sizeable amount of money, but luckily we could absorb the cost of my error. That is the only time I ever carried a balance on a credit card; never again!

  3. I put just about EVERYTHING on credit card. I use State Farm Visa and accrue points that I use to pay my car insurance and any extra to put toward home insurance, which is higher than most because of my art. Like you, I pay my statements in full, but every month I take a big gulp of air before I look at the bill. Though barely any other money leaves my hands, it’s still a shocker.

  4. Tom McCubbin says:

    I went years with no credit card, until I needed to fly somewhere and the car rental company at the airport would not rent to me for cash, only credit. So I got my first card and have resented it ever since…

  5. Maggie says:

    That is an excellent idea Reenie, gathering points by paying with a credit card. So far I am too cowardly to try it, I fear what would happen if something happened to me, and in his grief Attila forgot all about the credit card bills, or even the other way round, if I were to experience losing him, forgetting all about credit card payments, then the interest would just begin to pile up, and without any payment at all legal action would be taken against the debt. Or what if we lost access to the Internet, and couldn’t drive the many miles to the bank, what a mess that would become! The possibility of loss of control seems ominous to me, I guess I should think it through again, and see if I can find a way to do it within my comfort zone, a penny saved is a penny earned!

  6. Maggie says:

    LOL Tom, I know what you mean! At times I think about the wisdom of purchasing a one use “gift” card credit card, for a specific amount, then just using that on the Internet and in places where only a credit card will work as payment. So many options, cash used to be so simple, you had it, or you did not.

  7. Fortunately, everywhere I shop either takes the debit card or paypal, so I’ve not had need of a credit card. May it continue to be so! Paypal is nice because it handles exchanges between different countries, and no debit card # is given to the business with whom you are doing business.

  8. Maggie says:

    Actually Joan, paypal sounds like a good alternative to a credit card for online purchases! I have an account with paypal, and haven’t looked at it for years. It is time to blow the dust off and revisit the service.