Arrrrggghhh...and not in a good 'pirate-y' way.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008
I’m down in the dumps, feeling blue, and a wee bit unhappy at the moment. You see, I didn’t win the Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes…yet again! Actually, I had a good look at my finances over the past few days and the outlook is bleak. As you know, I’ve booked a trip to the UK this spring – a much deserved, long awaited trip that I’m very excited about taking. The flight and hotel have both been paid for, transit to/from the airport has been purchased or arranged, getting around central London is taken care of. All that I really need to do over the next few months is save up my spending money so that I can eat, buy a couple of relatively non-tacky souvenirs, hop a train to visit Red and *asterisk, and treat them to a yummy breakfast, some fish and chips and perhaps a few pints. Easy peasy, no? No.

My paycheck provides me with enough money to pay my rent, bills, groceries, student loan payment and occasionally have a buck or two left over for a small treat. Not a lot left for saving towards the trip although, if my calculations are correct, I will be able to save just enough to manage while I’m over there. I currently have a whopping ₤100 saved. Actually I don’t have it but I’ve ordered the GBP from the bank and should have them by next week. That won’t last long in London, I’m guessing. Granted, I’m doing London on the super-cheap. Most of the places I’m planning on visiting are museums and, unlike here, most of those are free to visit. Sweet.

So what’s the problem, you ask? It’s the items I need right now or in the next few months which are unrelated to the trip and can’t put off purchasing any longer. There’s a new fall/spring coat. My current one has had a hole in the pocket for the entire summer, it’s dingy and will no longer come clean, and the zipper’s threatening to fall apart. It’s lasted two years and I’ve worn it to threads so I can’t complain but I desperately need a new one if not immediately then before I leave for the UK. And coats aren’t exactly cheap which is part of the reason I’ve put off purchasing one. Christmas is just around the corner. Fortunately we’re having a general gift exchange at the family gathering so I only need to purchase one gift rather than something for everyone. Other than that, there’s presents for the niece and nephew and a small inexpensive gift for work. Thank goodness I picked up most of mom’s present last night (we’re exchanging gifts at home before heading to Big Brother’s this year). Socks. Three pairs have developed holes in them just this past week. Give me a break!!!! I’m going to need a new wig soon. Then there’s underwear, bras, t-shirts, a new pair of jeans (I only have one pair and they’re wearing out too). I have yet to find a shoulder bag to take with me to the UK in order to carry my wallet, camera, etc. rather than toting around a backpack everywhere I go.

Cancelling my trip and putting that money towards these things as well as paying down my loan and my credit card would probably be the grownup, responsible thing to do, right? Trust me, I’ve considered it. I haven’t checked to see if I can but I’m pretty sure it’s not a problem. However, I don’t want to do that. I’ve been on one trip my entire life and that was half my lifetime ago so I think I’ve earned it. What this means … I don’t know. I’m not cancelling my trip (never fear!). I have considered a part time job and have been offered a couple over the past few months but they’ve ended up resulting in too long of a bus trip which means I don’t get home until 11 or later, or they want me to work almost every weeknight which makes for very very long weeks. Trying to find a pt job where you only work weekends? Good luck. There’s still a number of places hiring but a large portion are currently looking for daytime staff and, well, I’m not giving up my fulltime, well-paying job to work for minimum wage.

Anyone want to give me $500 no strings attached? No? I didn’t think so. I’ll struggle through…somehow.


Wandering Coyote said...

I unfortunately don't have that kind of cash to give you but...Are there ways to buy less expensive things on your list...

For instance: visit a second hand shop for jeans (I get great stuff at Value Village). Can you put up with Wal Mart bras for a few months? Can you go to MEC and get a shoulder bag for your trip (I have a great one from there that was $25 and holds all kinds of shit and I have used it for carry on, purse, etc. etc.). Just some ideas.

I hear your frustration. I'm beginning to wonder about my train trip in May...perhaps it was unreasonable of me to plan such a thing...

You need and deserve the holiday, though!

tweetey30 said...

I would if I had 500 dollars... I know what a trip can cost and how much we all look forward to them.. We have a trip home to see my parents in Dec and no one on my blog rolls knows yet.. I am not going to post about it till it gets closer to those days..

Heather said...

I could find $50 or so for you...maybe we should have a 'send Karen to England' ebay auction. I could knit some socks for you to auction off. When are you going?

sp said...

If I had the money I'd give it to you.
Wandering Coyote has some good ideas. I had the same ones as well such as a trip to VV since they often have some great stuff.

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