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Service Charges Work in Mysterious Ways

Ah, life, it has such a sense of humour. We all knew that right? And how nice it is to get reminders. So let me regale you with retelling the series of cosmic pranks which Z and I have been living with since Friday.

You know what's even more amusing than being sent a bill for backdated Extra Service Charges (merry Christmas to everyone!)? Having that bill sent to the wrong address.

And, what you may ask, is even funnier than that? Having court proceedings brought up against you because you neglected to pay this bill which you didn't know existed, and then being held responsible for all (steeply rising, bedecked with interest) costs for the legal proceedings.

And the punchline, the height of hilarity? Why, only learning about this situation upon receipt of a letter from your mortgage lender. A letter and copies of correpondence that uses an emotive turn of phrase such as 'blah blah violation of lease due to nonpayment of service charges' 'blah blah bad credit' 'blah blah remortgaging application on hold' 'blah blah sort it out suckers or look into the stony raging jaws of the repossession of your house'.

It's all been a barrel of capitalist laughs I tell you.

Actually, I am deeply proud of the way Z and I have dealt with it all. Nobody shouted, nobody blamed or accused or shook hands at heaven while shouting 'WHYYYYY MEEEEEEEEE'? Instead, we just pulled together in a steely team-like fashion to devise a plan and sort out the situation as quickly as possible and spent the in-between hours clinging to one another like chiller's kittens re-affirming the depths of our affection for each other and the the most important thing which was not losing sight of that or of our excitement at the nearness of baby.

Because if you do get stressed, if you do lose sight of that? Then the bastards have truly won.

So while the last few days have been embellished by all kinds of new and interesting stresses of the Plutonic 'let me strip you down to your naked shivering cores' sort, they were also some of the most deeply intimate of this year. Because the only antidote to harshness of the world? Exchanging ever-more tender language with your husband. And knowing that as long as you yourselves are okay, that is the key, the deepest heart and bone of it; that everything else will resolve itself.

Also, I have hope, for I have seen that men and God are not immune to the tears of women. How do I know this? Because yesterday the Cats Protection people phoned me up to ask if I wanted the little cat back.

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
mzdt
Dec. 10th, 2007 09:45 am (UTC)
ouch! that must have been awful, and I'm glad you held together on it...

I had a similar thing where the tax office had an old address for me. They only decided to get my current one from my employers - through I paid the tax anyway - to send me demands for fines for not filling in the forms they admitted hadn't been sent to me... I got it all sorted in the end, they eventually deciding it just wasn't worth me doing a tax return anyway.

So beloved cat not pregnant? Good news, if you think you can fit her in to your forthcoming life...
rainsinger
Dec. 10th, 2007 10:17 am (UTC)
Beloved cat was pregnant, but isn't now on account of not having a womb anymore.

It was the early stage of some unviable pregnancy that would likely have killed her, had it progressed to term according to the Cat People. I think they have decided they don't want to stay in the way of The Deep True Love she and my first cat share (seeing how he's the one that delivered her from whatever distressing circumstances she was living in, her body is full of wounds and scars - but Cat People think she was being mistreated by animals not humans since she was quite feral and had no chip or anything).

So in all likelihood I get New And Improved Cat Fitted With Microchips and Vaccines at some future point.

And it comforts me that everyone has a similar story of Things Going Wrong Through Misderected Mail And Other Administrative Errors. Comforts and unsettles me...
mzdt
Dec. 10th, 2007 10:02 pm (UTC)
I'm still trying to work out how they got the address wrong for a bill for services charges on that very property. I'm not sure how long I'll continue trying, though.
offensive_mango
Dec. 10th, 2007 10:12 am (UTC)
Oh god, what a nightmare. Best wishes for everything. And I'm glad the little cat might be able to come back in your life, if you can handle her xxxx
rainsinger
Dec. 10th, 2007 12:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :)

A good thing which has come from all these experiences is the realisation that all our determination to put savings aside is clearly absurd since we've had to spend them clearly unjust penalties, and if I can be forced to shell out hard cash for that then I can spend money on food and vet fees for something which makes me happy.
chiller
Dec. 10th, 2007 11:28 am (UTC)
What a nightmare! But they can't very well prosecute you for failing to pay a bill they failed to deliver to you. I don't think a court would give that very much time at all, particuarly not when you're perfectly willing to pay reasonable charges.

I am following the tale of your little cat closely. It's currently my soap opera, and in my heart I hope you get her back and that it has a happy ending. xx
rainsinger
Dec. 10th, 2007 12:02 pm (UTC)
But they can't very well prosecute you for failing to pay a bill they failed to deliver to you. I don't think a court would give that very much time at all, particuarly not when you're perfectly willing to pay reasonable charges.


Your words, they are logical, and I am very fond of logic. However, experience of the past few days teaches that in this case logic is erroneous (which I nearly misspelled as erogenous). The heart would weep but we've just sent off a cheque for £1,400 (of which actual service charges = £300, the rest is all interest and steeply inflating court costs, which have within the month gone from £200 to £1000). Since we never replied to the court claim form (which we never received, thanks to wrong address business) the court ruled we were guilty by absentia and until this debt was cleared and we had a ruling saying court was satisfied we couldn't remortgage. To fight the court's decision using the tools of logic and 'hello, we never got your mail fuckers' was going to cost £1500 at least (lawyers! they are also so funny!)

The good thing about all this surrealism is that a) we have discovered that once you reach and cross a certain threshold of financial pain it stops hurting and b) we won't be contributing to the damage to the earth by going on any holidays next year.

I am following the tale of your little cat closely. It's currently my soap opera, and in my heart I hope you get her back and that it has a happy ending. xx

Like any good soap opera this one contains whodunnits and hot animal sex and adulterous liasons. We've been hotly debating who knocked her up since we saw her and my (spayed) First Cat embodying the will and way thing by having hanky panky in the garden, because apparently you can take his balls (or can you?) but not his desire.

I am sad to report however, that so far there has been no twiddling of moustaches. I really must get on with teaching the cat how to do that.

haggisthesecond
Dec. 10th, 2007 04:42 pm (UTC)
good lord, that is horrifying! I hope your quick and concerted action with the chequebook brings this to a conclusion.

And yay for getting the little cat back! I'm so pleased. x
rainsinger
Dec. 13th, 2007 04:23 pm (UTC)
good lord, that is horrifying! I hope your quick and concerted action with the chequebook brings this to a conclusion.


As far as I know it's sorted now, except for the occasional mini pain spasm I develop when I think about all the other things (better! shinier!) that we could have spent that money on instead.

Little Cat should be coming back on Monday.
meepettemu
Dec. 12th, 2007 11:22 pm (UTC)
oh bugger. :o(

I am glad you have the little cat for solace though x
rainsinger
Dec. 13th, 2007 04:21 pm (UTC)
I think they'll drop her off here on Monday.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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