Thursday, August 20, 2009

Long payback chain

Our money is a total mess right now. I was supposed to get an advance from one of my small grants in the form of a check. It takes them forever to write checks so it wasn't cut until June 1 and was supposed to arrive before Jon left for Ukenzagapia. It didn't.

We borrowed the money from our tax account (since UBC doesn't withhold taxes from my paycheck).

Then I was a victim of ATM fraud and all of that money and more was stolen. My bank returned the stolen money after a few weeks, but then they closed all of my accounts with them. So, my nicely sorted savings all ended up in one messy heap.

In the meantime, I borrowed $1100 from my Ukenzagapian contact Dr. K. for my last month of fieldwork.

I wanted to pay him back before leaving Ukenzagapia but didn't have enough money in my remaining debit account (it was all tied up in other unlinked accounts or undeposited checks), and even if I did daily limits would've prevented me from getting out all of the money in cash. If I didn't pay him back then I'd have to work something out with Sam or wire they money (very expensive). On top of what I borrowed, I owed him a few hundred dollars for other things.

My American friend in Ukenzagapia generously offered to lend me over $1000 in local currency and I could pay them back with a check sent to their sister in the U.S. to whom they owed money. I used their money to repay Dr. K.

Yesterday I finally deposited the check for the grant balance.

Today I repaid my American friend via her sister.

Now I only owe money to myself.

Someday I'll get all of our money back in order. Soon, I hope.

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