Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday morning things

I *think* I have everything packed. Will probably do a second check when I get home (am not holding office hours today, it's not like anyone ever comes anyway) but I know I have my meds and my make-up and my mouthguard and my toothbrush and my hairbrush and enough books and a couple small knitting projects and underwear and enough shirts and a set of pajamas....and the Christmas gifts for family.

My dad continues to show improvement - my mom called me briefly last night. He's more mobile AND ALSO the doctor suggested that a PT person could come to the HOUSE, which is a lovely solution (if an expensive one). I think it was actually trying to get out for PT that was when he fell. It would be good if he could get a couple weeks of that, get stronger and better balance, before he had to go out regularly again.  So I'm hopeful he'll be home - also, with my brother there to help lift and stuff (my mom is going to have him come to the hospital with her) they might be more likely to release him.

I have cash, and actually discovered part of the "horde" I put aside for my trip to Longview that I thought I had spent but did not, so that's good.

And I gassed the car up this morning, though that was an effort.

Every place here - perhaps every place in the country now - makes you pre-pay, because there's enough of a critical mass of dishonest people who will drive off without paying. But: most pumps now have card-readers.

(Even if some of the stupid news programs tell you not to use them because of skimmers, and "you might get your credit card number stolen." Well, given the fact that we ALL got our personal info compromised THROUGH NO FAULT OF OUR OWN in the Equifax breach - yeah, forget that)

The one at the Love's wasn't working today, though: the keypad where you type in your zip code (if using a credit card) wasn't working. I tried and cancelled twice.

Then I walked UP to the office of the place, in the still-twilight of early morning. Was thinking about a friend of mine at church who said his aunt had been mugged over the weekend (in her own drive). This is the "good" side of town I'm on right now (and where I live), and she lives in the higher-crime section, but still....

I told the guy I wanted 12 gallons of gas (I was at about 3/8 of a tank, so I guessed that would be the right amount). HE PULLED OUT A CALCULATOR.

I was standing there going "It's $26.40, it's $26.40" but I guess he had to satisfy himself (and yeah, I wasn't gonna fight him over that 1/10 of a cent). I paid, and went and gassed up.

The car only needed 10 gallons. (To make it easy, I jiggled the handle until it was 10: exactly $22.00). Briefly contemplated if the $4.60 was worth it. Decided it was, walked back up, arranged for my card to be refunded. Thought of Mike's aunt again as I walked back to the car.

And yeah, this is how the crooks ruin it for the honest people: when I was a kid, my dad could gas up the car by pulling up to a pump, putting in as much gas as he wanted, and then walking up to the office to pay the amount. No second trip if you ran under your estimate, no being cut off before a full tank if you needed more than you estimated it.

And also, the whole "Don't use credit card readers because crooks could put skimmers on them" mindset is for the birds: first off, it takes the onus off the owners of the gas stations (who should be CHECKING their pumps regularly) and also off of any kind of law enforcement/FBI thing to try to limit this kind of activity, and puts it on the consumer: just hike up to the office twice, and wait in line twice, because we've already taken the privilege to fill-then-pay from you because of a few crooks.

And also, late at night, or in dodgy areas - well, I'd rather have my credit card number stolen than maybe get jumped going up to pay at the office. And there's the whole "bad weather" issue, and the whole "some people's legs don't work as well as mine" issue or the whole "some people are single moms with a couple kids in the car they'd rather not unbuckle or leave unattended" issue.

But yeah. I hope that's the biggest complication of today.  I need to leave *here* around 2 pm to make the train station in adequate time. I'll be back (hopefully) Saturday...

1 comment:

purlewe said...

I know you are already off. I hope you have fun. Hug all your family and get some lovely time with them.