Geez, it feels like I’m bleeding money lately. First, yesteday I got home from school about noon and my electricity was off. I figured it was the whole apartment building since the hallway lights didn’t seem to be working either. I waited about an hour, then I went to ask Brahim, the building concierge, if he had power. He did, and I also noticed that the hall lights were working, too. He came to my apartment to check the power box, as I had already done, and came to the conclusion that I needed an electrician. So, he called one and the guy came in short order. Apparently, some of the insulation in the wires behind the box had corroded. He had to pull the old box out and install a new one, but he had to chisel out quite a bit of the wall to get the job done. He finished up earlier this afternoon and the bill came to $160! Sheesh. Hopefully, I can get the landlady, who lives in the Netherlands, to pay this. I’ll check into it.

Then, I’ve been waiting for my Korean National Pension refund. And waiting. I finally emailed the admin guy at Andong National U., who said he was going to turn in my paperwork and take care of everything for me at the time that I left Korea. Either he didn’t get the paperwork in on time, which he seemed to indicate in his return email, or the Korean Pension Office messed up. The pension officer in Korea gave him the number of the International Affairs Division of the Social Security Administration in the U.S. for me to call, saying that they were the only ones who could help me. Of course I’ll phone them, but I don’t see how they’re going to be able to help me, and dealing with any government bureaucracy from overseas will probably be a nightmare. I have a dreadful feeling that I’ve been screwed out of approximately $4,000.

Of course, both these incidents come shortly after I bought my new bike, so perhaps that’s my money-loss trifecta for the year. The upshot is that I have to go on an Austerity Campaign to really limit the amount of money that I spend. More veggies, less meat; more freeware, less shareware/commercial software, etc. I really gotta tighten the purse strings. Uhhhmmm, just as soon as I visit the local patisserie. More later (Hopefully, not more of this type of crap.)