Saving Grace

I need to be better with my money. I never check my account, i just hope & pray it doesn’t get declined while paying for my burrito with extra guac.

You’re gorgeous, you’re beautiful, you cost me my life savings but baby you are worth it

Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com

I have 5 accounts with 2 different banks and the only reason is because I am too lazy to close my old accounts and also to change the 3 things still linked to them; PayPal, Mortgage insurance and Spotify Premium (Cos I am damn well not having my skips limited when i skip 80% of songs on my drive every morning. Its $14.99 a month for my sanity, give me a break).

So i need to visit my bank and close my old ones which I have been transferring money into every month just to cover the above bills. My account at that bank has just 43 cents in it, why have I kept it????? My 3 accounts with my new bank are spending, mortgage and credit card (which I only use for emergencies. My last emergency being there was a sale at Decjuba and my paycheck hadn’t gone in yet). I should also open a purely savings account as well so I stop thinking i have the same amount of disposable income as a Kardashian. Before I turn 28 I’d really like to have a 5 figured amount saved, which I kind of do right now only that includes the cents.

Chandler Bing is truly an icon

My excuses for not doing this earlier have ranged from ‘the banks are only open when I am at work’, wrong you lazy bitch, they are open Saturday mornings, put down your hot cross bun and go in, to ‘My experience will be like that scene in Friends where Chandler tries to quit the Gym but resorts to trying to close his bank account but gets guilted into opening a joint checking account. Would they try to sign me up for an account with an annual fee? Definitely yes. Would I be stupid enough to go along with it because he was an attractive 30 something year old man in a suit with no wedding ring and a sly smile? Also yes

I start really simply by opening up the app on my phone and opening a new goal savings account on there. It makes me set a goal with a timeline and breaks it down into how much I have to save a week to hit it. When i transfer that amount in, a smiley face comes up with some confetti and tells me I’m doing a great job. At last some validation. Thank you CommBank, I am doing a great job, I appreciate you. That gives me just enough joy to feel like I am able to conquer the bank in person.

A really simple way to make me another human happy is to say you’re doing a great job

I don’t know why this causes me anxiety but the thought of walking into the bank to quit it made my palms sweat. Maybe it’s just the act of quitting that makes me feel that way. But that’s an internal issue I am DEFINITELY not ready to deal with.

I showed up right at 9am, thinking it would be better to be first person there and not have to line up for an hour (the only things I have willingly lined up for are theme park rides and tickets to any midnight screening of Harry Potter). Well, I’ll be damned, the bank is as lazy as I am and doesnt open til 9.30 so now I am stuck hanging around with a delightful elderly couple arguing about him spending $3 on some tinned peaches when she doesn’t like peaches and a man with a ripped tshirt and a piece of electrical tape holding his pants together who smelled like the interesting combination of cigarettes, car exhaust and day old hot dog water. The old couples argument was progressive, and I don’t mean ahead of their time. I mean that they took the argument from in front of the bank to the Donut King to order a shared coffee, to the food court, where they momentarily paused to argue over who got to sit on the ‘good side’ of the table. Hot Dog man pulled a nail clipper out of his pocket and begun to tend to his fingernails…..RIGHT THERE IN THE SHOPPING CENTRE. Oh lordy lord, why wasn’t time moving faster. I could see the outlines of people moving around inside of the bank so I checked my watch, surely it had been almost 30 minutes. “9.07” it said. Great. 23 minutes to go.

Hot Dog man has now sat on a bench, taken one of his Adidas-knock-off slides off and was inspecting his big toenail ready to give it a good chop. The elderly couple have received their quarter strength cappuccino and are now fighting over who gets to eat the foam, a spoon being used as the rope in this tug of war. A young mother with 2 small children has now joined our unlikely waiting Quad. She is pushing a pram backwards & forwards while the baby sleeps….and the toddler has collapsed himself in the underneath compartment, legs and arms dragging along the ground, crying and screaming like a 14 yr old who has just been dumped by her boyfriend of 2 days.

Finally a man in a suit emerges from the bank and the mechanical roller door starts to lift. Hot Dog man is so keen he leaves his shoe on the bench but doesnt seem to notice. Old Couple are now spilling their coffee as they ‘quickly’ try to finish. Mum of the Devil Spawn is standing back to let the rest of us go ahead of her. She looks like she hasn’t slept in weeks. I let her go ahead of me and she says Thank You but her facial expression says so much more than that, I’ve done my good deed for the day.

I tell the concierge i want to close my accounts and she takes me over to a stand up desk and we go through all the usual questions. Then she pauses, ‘How much money do you have in your account? It’s probably easier if we get that withdrawn at the ATM and then close it,’. I snort laugh and say ’43 cents’. She goes blank and then says ‘oh, right….maybe we could ummm….I’m not really sure what to do,’. ‘I’ll just transfer it out now to my other account,’ I say and quickly do it on the app. Another reason for switching banks, clearly this girl doesn’t know what she is doing and I don’t feel comfortable trusting my money to her.

Once I tell her my reasons for closing my account is because I want to keep all my accounts with my Mortgage she doesn’t even try to get me to stay with them which I am thankful for. Besides the wait to get in, it only took 10 minutes to close the accounts. Then she gave me advice on how to switch my Spotify, Mortgage insurance and PayPal to come out of my new account which was super nice. Maybe I shouldn’t have changed banks……Just as I am slightly hesitant in my decision, Hot Dog man starts yelling at the Teller about them not giving him his money and waving his bank card around. He threatens to call the police because he is being robbed. Finally the Manager escorts him out the front and buzzes the centre security who handle him from there. I hear the teller saying to an employee with an ‘I’m still learning’ badge on, ‘He comes in here every week with a bank card in someone elses name trying to withdraw cash when he doesnt know the pin number.’

At the very least my new bank doesn’t have Hot Dog man to deal with, and that’s the saving grace.

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