Monday, June 13, 2011

Meiji and me

On Sunday evening, I was eating a Meiji green tea ice-cream on stick followed by a Meiji double chocolate ice-cream on stick during my almost 15 minutes walk home from the supermarket. It was a cool 17 degree Celsius, with a clear evening sky and sunshine on Canadian Rockies, and a light gentle breeze on my stroll.


Thursday, June 02, 2011

8th month's expenses

My total expense for the 8th month (1st to 31th May) is around CAD1,245, broken down as follow.

Amount (CAD) : Category

Once-off expenses

 *  3 : Emergency Response Bag contents (additional items)
 *228 : Write-off bad-debt loan1

Yearly expenses


Monthly expenses

* 500 : May room rental
*  39 : Mobile phone bill
*  61 : Medical Services Plan
* 110 : Transport - Monthly 2-Zone Farecard
* NIL : Transport - Others
* 224 : Food/groceries2
* NIL : Clothings
*   5 : Household Items (including toiletries)
*  43 : Recreation/Entertainment/Restaurant
*  16 : Meals/Drinks
* NIL : Personal Grooming & Make-up
*   2 : Stationery/Postage
*  14 : Others (Lottery, Souvenirs, etc)

Note 1:

An ex-housemate who originated from China called me up on 2nd-May asking to borrow money. His story was his girlfriend locked him out of their apartment, without any chance for him to take anything with him. Thus, he rented a car from a taxi company to drive around looking for her. As he racked up over $200 in petrol costs, the taxi company confiscated his mobile and demanded $200 in exchange. He had nothing else on him, beside a few coins for public phone calls and my name-card that, coincidentally, I gave him the day before.

I declined lending him any money initially. However, he said that I could follow him to the taxi company to verify his story and promised to return me the money that same evening when his tax refund cheque cleared. Thus, I went with him to the well-known taxi company's HQ, paid $200 on his behalf to retrieve his phone. [I had a deja-vu at the taxi company's HQ.] As I was in a rush to get to work, we took a taxi ride to the HQ and back to near my home, which cost $28. He suggested to add the taxi fare to his loan.

I told him to return me the money the next morning as I was working that evening. However, instead of calling me to arrange for repayment, he called to borrow more money several times. Each time with more stories/excuses. E.g. He needed some money for his new rental deposit, he is awaiting for his mother in Beijing to transfer money to his Canadian account, etc. Each time, I firmly declined. My suspicions were raised. Finally, he requested for another loan, offering to repay with 50% to 100% interest within a week, and that he would sign an I.O.U. for it. I told him calmly and firmly that it was a matter of principle, not whether I can or cannot lend him the money. However, I was angry inside -- he was setting me up! Loansharking is illegal! [In addition, it is against my principles.]

After 3 extensions to his deadline for repayment passed, I messaged him on the 21st May that since he has not kept his promise, I would do whatever needed to retrieve my money back, including reporting him as a con-man to the police. I told my landlord about the loan. My landlord told me that I should not have lent money to someone that I did not know well. [He is right, I am too trusting.] My landlord also told me that this ex-tenant is a good-for-nothing who idles around and was often late in his rental payments.

Guess, I will take it as 破財消災 ["losing some money to overcome misfortune/bad-luck"].

Note 2: There was lots of groceries sales and deals in May. Thus, I spent more to stock-up on microwavable meals, instant noodles, breakfast cereals, etc.