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Saturday, 21 March 2015



Hi dear friends and follower, I hope you all have a wonderful Saturday. Have a good read and thank you for coming.

Hello, Everyone, and thank you for having a look at my humble weekly feature. I am grateful that you share your time with me.

Earlier this week I had reason to chase some papers with the company that has my dental insurance. It had been over a month since my claim form had been submitted and I had heard nothing from them. With me, no news is not good news. It's just no news, and I don't like a state of not knowing.

I called them and got a person on the phone (these days that's an achievement) and I asked her to help me. She told me that they had my claim and she put a “flag” on it for special attention. I hope that means that it will be paid soon!

This episode made me share stories with a friend about the fact that companies and financial institutions do not stay in business because they “don't have the papers.” This includes banks. I've had a few less-than-great dealings with them, but all of this took me back to the very first time I got into the “battle of the papers” with a bank.

When I was 18 I left home as soon as I could be sure that I had a place to live, something to eat, and clothing to wear. I took care of that by enlisting in the United States Coast Guard. Anything was better than living at home, so I left and I have never regretted it.

About two years later I was stationed at a District office, along with a bunch of staff officers and an admiral who was the District Commander. It was a good assignment after I had spent a year or so in Washington, DC. That was when the town was going through growing pains before they had the Metro subway and a better bus and highway system. The District Office was a lot quieter, but the admiral's presence made it anything other than tranquil.

Back then, we were paid on the 15th and the last day of the month. We received actual paychecks as this was in the days before direct deposit. The bank lines were quite long at times.

Now it was accepted the practice in our shop, and probably many others, to send two people to cash all the paychecks for their colleagues. One of your associates would give you her or his military ID card and their endorsed check to present at the bank. This was sufficient evidence for the bank to cash the check and put the money and the ID card into a small, white cash envelope. Cashing 10 to 15 checks was common practice.

I was one of the runners because I was a big girl. I would cash the checks at the nearest bank. I also had a savings account there and I put almost all of my pay in savings. Over time, I had a tidy little sum for back in 1973: about $4,400.00

One day I received a letter in the mail with an application for a Mastercharge card (this is what they once called the Mastercard). It was from the bank branch where I did business, so I completed the application and sent it on its way.

A few weeks later I got a reply from my bank and at first I felt terrible. I was declined to have a card because I was an unmarried woman who was not at her address long enough to suit them. My feeling terrible lasted for about a half-hour. Then I got pissed-off and decided to confront them about that letter.

I was able to get some time off during the day to go to the bank. I walked in and asked the receptionist if the person who signed the letter was in the bank branch. She told me that he was, and pointed him out to me. After asking to see him, I was at his desk, letter in-hand.

He greeted me properly and asked how he could be of service. I showed him the letter and asked him to change it. He stuttered and stammered and told me that he was not able. I told him that I had a lease in an apartment in my name; that the car I drove was financed in my name and that I was paying for it monthly. Lastly, I showed him my savings passbook that had a balance of a little over $4,400 in it. He still refused to reconsider because I was a single woman who did not own a house. I thanked him and went over to the teller's windows.

I approached one where a man was working, wrote a withdrawal slip to take out every cent that I had in that bank, and passed it to him. I knew that he did not have the authority to pay out that much money without approval of the head teller or the cashier, nor did he have that kind of money in his till. When he told me that I would have to wait while he made arrangements, the smart-ass in me made me step back from his window and say in a loud voice, “What? You can't give me my money?” The bank became very quiet and all eyes were on the young woman in the white Coast Guard uniform who was standing there looking like she had seen a ghost!

Eventually, the money was handed to me in a white envelope. I signed the agreement that said I had closed all of my accounts and left – and drove right to the bank that was issuing the BankAmericard, the forerunner of today's Visa card.

I will never forget how things went when I arrived there. I asked to see the branch manager and I was immediately taken into the office of a woman on whose door was the sign that said “Mrs. Vining.” She greeted me and we shook hands. I then told her about my leaving the other bank but left out the part about “What? You can't give me my money?”

I opened a checking account. I deposited $4,400 in a savings account. Then I showed her the installment contract for my car payments and the lease for my apartment and asked if I had enough business at her bank to get a BankAmericard. Before I left I had her personal approval for a card with a $500 limit. That is all that I had wanted because I had this feeling that establishing personal credit would be important to me in the future.

I am glad that I did not take “no” for the only answer there was to be had. I did not take it from my mother and I sure was not going to take it from some person sitting behind a desk at a branch bank when I knew I did not deserve it.

I continued to cash the paychecks for my associates at that bank and every payday I would look for that man who refused to do business with a single me and give him a smile and a wave.

Thank you very much again, dear friends, for visiting my blog. Please share your thoughts with us, if you will. have a great Weekend.
ڰۣIn Loving Light from the Fairy Ladyڰۣ

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