Cut Off

telus3Unbelievable.

I’ve battled through financial issues before.  Heck…I’ve never been that good with money.  Ever.

But lately I’ve been doing my best to keep up with things.  I’ve cut down on expenses (ex: I haven’t had internet access other than my Blackberry since August) and have been doing whatever I can to stay afloat, especially with my visits to see Sunshine cutting into the budget.

So what happened to me on Friday threw me for a loop and infuriated me to no end.

I have a $200 credit limit on my Blackberry.  No problem…I have no intentions of going over that amount and I understand the practise from a business perspective (i.e. no huge unpaid balances to worry about).  I knew that I would incur some roaming charges during my trip to the U.S. a few weeks ago, but didn’t know just how much I would be charged.

I received a phone call on 10/27 from my carrier, Telus.  It was a “friendly reminder” that when the new statement is released I would be over my $200 limit due to the charges incurred on my trip.  I told the caller that I would make a payment on Friday (10/30) online.  No worries.  End of call.

My phone was cut off mid-afternoon on 10/29.

I called Telus and attempted to find out just what was going on.  I tried to explain that after the phone call on 10/27 I went online to view my bill, but my bill was not yet available.  He told me that a physical bill was, in fact, mailed on 10/27.

n1071125584_23105_664I tried to find out just why in the world I wasn’t told that I had 48 hours to pay down my balance before being cut off.  The explanation I received was the “you were told that you were over your $200 credit limit and against the terms of your contract.”

Well yes…I know that…but I didn’t know I was going to be over my credit limit until the time of the phone call, at which point a payment discussion was made and agreed upon by both parties.

So WTF???

As of now, I am sitting at my computer with zero connection to the outside world.  I am fuming.  Pissed.  I’m still shaking from the heated discussion I had with Telus on the phone four hours prior.  I mean, I was yelling.  The person on the other end of the phone could barely articulate…much less answer my questions.  Every time I tried to clarify (“Wait…so I had HOW much on my current bill?”) he interrupted me to the point that I was cursing at him and yelling at him to shut up.

I demanded a supervisor.  He declined.  I asked more specific questions.  He didn’t answer me directly. I asked him about surcharges.  He skirted the issue. I got more and more animated and eventually, when ending the call, told him just how bad of a call he just had with an upset customer.

I emailed the company and explained the entire situation…in MUCH more detail that what I’ve written here.  I explained how they failed to explain the situation to me during the initial call.  I explained how they do not have any way for me to check my ongoing charges before a bill is generated, so I had no idea that I had gone over the $200 credit limit until the date the bill was actually generated…which was 48 hours before I was cut off.

I’m just livid right now.

I can’t check email.  I can’t talk to Sunshine.  I can’t call for assistance should something happen to me or to Ankle Biter over the weekend.

Telus-Ad-1BAH!!

I just don’t know what else to think right now.  A terrible customer service experience where it really didn’t need to be.  If I was told on 10/27 that a payment needed to be made within 48 hours or else I’d have my account suspended, then I wouldn’t have waited until 10/30 to make the payment.  But again…nothing was said during my conversation with Telus and this was all a shock to me.

Until this bill is paid in full (and it might be out there until my next paycheck),  I might just have to drive around the city at night with Sunshine’s laptop looking for an unsecured internet connection…just so I can have a conversation with Sunshine that’s not via email at work.  Or sit at Starbucks every night and pay $5 for a coffee just so I don’t get thrown out.

Pissed.

Off.

Do you believe?

ghostsSo here I’m now a firm believer in true love.  Absolute 100% bona fide true blue love.  I believe.

But do I believe in ghosts?

An odd question, I know…but with Halloween just around the corner the question kinda popped up in my head.  I’ve always been one of those people that wanted to believe but wasn’t quite at the point where I did believe.

I mean, I remember seeing the old footage of “Bigfoot” when I was a kid…and I really wanted to believe it to be real, but never believed the ‘proof’.  Same thing with the Loch Ness Monster and aliens.  There was never any definitive proof of anything but I always wanted to believe in these things.

Ghosts, though, are different. 

I’m not a believer in Casper or anything, nor am I a believer in something like what happens in Paranormal Activity.  But I do believe in the afterlife, and with the glorious sights of ghosts and goblins taking place this week leading into Saturday night, the thought has certainly popped into my head a lot more than normal.

I watch Ghost Hunters…and this show, once you ignore the quick edits and the creepy music, is great for those like me who believe in the paranormal but not in the classic Scooby Doo sense.

Sounds without explanation…shadows in areas where there aren’t any people…chairs falling over when there is clearly nobody around… these are things that interest me to no end.  I can’t explain the interest, though, because I’m a big ol’ frightened baby 99% of the time.

I hate scary movies.  I hate horror movies and gory movies and any scenes that give you a fright.  You would think, then, that ghosts would frighten the hell out of me.  They don’t, though.  I would love to encounter the paranormal.  I think I’d be freaked out at first, but then I’d proceed with a communication process.

Strange, I know.

My biggest fears in life are heights and spiders.  In that respect, I’m very similar to Steve on Ghost Hunters.  He’s also a guy who isn’t afraid of the paranormal but is deathly afraid of heights and spiders.  He takes the paranormal for what it is…people who haven’t quite passed through to whatever afterlife they need to pass on to.

What about you?  Do you believe in the afterlife?  The paranormal? Ghosts? Apparitions?  Does this time of the year entertain you or creep you out?

Sunshine with Sunshine

It’s funny how reading other blogs can inspire thoughts in your own head. I was reading last night about a trip to Florida made by one of my favourite bloggers, QT Mama. Her tales of fun times in the sunshine made me think about fun times with Sunshine. More specifically, future fun times with Sunshine.

I love Florida. I’ve been there about a dozen times over the course of my life, primarily as a kid with my family visiting all of the glorious money pits known as theme parks. My wish has always been to visit Florida as an adult in a romantic way…strolling through Main Street USA at Disney or enjoying the Jaws ride at Universal or standing in a room being completely surrounded by sharks at Sea World…all the while holding hands and enjoying life with the woman of my dreams.

Nothing would make me happier than to be able to do this with Sunshine one day. I have a sense that she would enjoy things almost as much as I would (well…almost).

I have extra incentive now, too. Why? Well, I went on a trip with The Ex down to Florida almost four years ago. This trip was supposed to be “the one” that I’ve been dreaming about. She was newly pregnant and my parents had foot the bill for the trip. Sounds fantastic, right?

Wrong.

We were on a very big downward spiral in our relationship during this time. We could fake happiness when out in public, but were almost always down each other’s throats once behind the closed hotel door. Needless to say, this trip was not the romantic fun journey I had dreamed it would be.

So that’s my extra incentive. The last trip I made to Florida was on very unhappy terms. I don’t want that as a lasting memory. I want to have the memory that I know I can have…the one that I deserve.

Sunshine is the one to do that with. I know that we’d have an amazing time together and our experience would be everything we could ever want and more. As cheesy as it may sound, I want to enjoy the sunshine with Sunshine.

It’s funny to say that, because I’m not really that much of an outdoor person. AT ALL. I’m not much of a beach person or a sun person or anything like that. But I would TOTALLY hit the beach in Florida if Sunshine was by my side.

So that’s my thought process today…that’s my daydream. And this is why I love reading blogs…when you randomly read through your favourites, you just never know when you’ll come across something that totally inspires you to write a blog post of your very own.

OMG…how long do I have???

christmas-giftsI can’t believe that Christmas is only two months away. That’s insane. I’ve only got four pay checks to make enough money to buy gifts for my entire family.

Goddamn…I’m just so sick and tired of living pay check to pay check.

It wasn’t perfect with a dual income, but it was a LOT easier. There was at least SOMETHING in the bank. Now I’m living with internet on my Blackberry and at work, with no extra money lying around once my bi-weekly trips to visit Sunshine are accounted for.

DON’T take that as a complaint in any way. I’ll gladly be broke in order to be completely and totally in love. It’s not even a question.

So I’ve got to be creative and think of ways to celebrate Christmas. And yes I know…it’s the thought that counts. Try telling that to a 10-year old girl who wants a laptop (especially when her 37-year old father wants a laptop of his own, too).

Plus I’ve now got a second family to consider…the woman of my dreams and her two amazing girls. I know they’re not greedy for material things, but I need to come up with some fun and creative ideas.

I’m thinking about taking advantage of the local Wal-Mart’s layaway plan. It’s not ideal, but it may work out just fine for me.

Surely I’m not the only one who waits until it’s too late to buy Christmas gifts. Why do I keep waiting? Why can’t I buy things as the year progresses? When will I ever learn??

BAH!!!

Getting Lost: The Real Test

night driving rainSaturday night was a real test for Sunshine and I as a couple.  We were off to visit some friends for supper and to hang out for the evening.  We had been there once before and were pretty sure we could find our way back even though it was on the other side of town.

Then I trusted Google Maps.  Ugh.

We got lost.  REAL lost.  Instead of taking the “slight right” that wasn’t in the directions, we continued straight…for about 30 minutes.  And of course, neither one of us had written down our friends’ phone number.

Then it began to rain.

Then it got dark.

Then our friends weren’t responding to our repeated messages on Facebook (thanks, Blackberry…definitely there when I needed you).

Finally, at around 7pm (an hour after we were supposed to arrive), a message came on my Blackberry giving me their phone number.  They talked us onto their street and we finally arrived at 7:25pm.  Almost 90 minutes late.

During this time, Sunshine and I almost got into an argument over little things.  Our stress levels were high and we weren’t sure what our next course of action was.

But then we laughed.  I mean, we had to.  We realized that we either had to laugh at the situation or get angry and cause an issue that really didn’t need to exist.

I’ve been lost before while in a relationship…in the daytime…when it was sunny…and it turned into an argument.  This just proved to me that we’ve got “the right stuff” and that we’re moving in a very positive direction.  Above all else, our communication skills are the key to our survival as a couple…and I think we’re doing a great job thus far.

Discovery…

Spent the morning with Sunshine & her kids yesterday and went to the local Discovery Center…

Discovery Center - Halifax, NS
Discovery Center - Halifax, NS
Sunshine: 10-23-09
Sunshine: 10-23-09
Sunshine & her girls creating new personalities (or something like that): 10-23-09
Sunshine & her girls creating new personalities (or something like that): 10-23-09
Sunshine & her girls: 10-23-09
Sunshine & her girls: 10-23-09
My foxy lady!
My foxy lady!
No children were harmed in the creation of this photo.
No children were harmed in the creation of this photo.
Just when you thought that two of us was more than enough...
Just when you thought that two of us was more than enough...
Our totally unhealthy Friday night snack-fest.
Our totally unhealthy Friday night snack-fest.