I haven’t written this newsletter in a while. For the past three months, Handrio and I have been on the road. We drove from Texas to New York to stay with my parents, and then went back and forth between NYC and Boston looking for an apartment and job. We never stayed in the one city for longer than a week at a time.
Once we finally moved in, I started my new job and spent my weekends cleaning the apartment, since it was filthy. We pay $1,750 for rent and the property management company couldn’t even spend $200 on cleaning service. I felt upset because I spent three weekends cleaning shit (literally, mouse poop)!
Okay, I’m done complaining about this issue now. I’m not upset anymore because it’s clean now, thanks to me and Handrio, and that’s all that matters at this point.
With so much change, it has been difficult for me to sit down and write. But starting today, I will be resuming my bi-monthly newsletter, as I’ve created a new routine. I might even write weekly, depending on my schedule.
Today, I want to share with you indirect expenses when moving. These are expenses that don’t even come to mind at first but hear me out because I did not think about these beforehand. A few newsletters ago, I shared our moving budget, which included transportation and first-month expenses. We saved $6,000 for this move, which we thought would be enough, but we were approximately $1,500 short in the end.
Several years back, my parents told me a news story that I still think about from time to time. A landlord had given a prospective tenant an apartment tour. The tenant signed the lease, paid one month’s rent and security deposit, and got the keys. A few days after the tenant moved in, the real landlord appeared, wondering who this tenant was and what was going on. The first landlord was a scam artist who disappeared after getting the money.
We all laughed at how foolish the tenant was. How could someone be so stupid?
Earlier this month, I could have been that fool.
Today I want to share with you an idea I got from my dear friend Robert Guddahl a few years ago. One day, Robert and I were talking on the phone. I asked him what he was doing. He responded, “Just swimming in my pool.” I thought he lived in an apartment. How could he own a pool? After I pressed him, he laughed and said, “Annie, I got my pool for free. It’s the Atlantic Ocean!”
Robert always has such a good sense of humor and comes up with the most unconventional ideas. Out of all our years as friends, his philosophy above has stuck with me most.
I drove to Ciudad Juarez in Mexico and back earlier this month, and I’m alive! I went there by myself and am glad I made it back in one piece. I was not prepared for how scared I would feel driving alone. Going through the Guadalupe Mountains, there were no gas stations for two hours. Realizing I had enough gas to get to the next city but not enough to get to a gas station, I panicked. I made a detour to a gas station in the middle of nowhere. When I couldn’t get the gas to come out of the nozzle, I panicked even more! Someone helped me, but it was a close call.
Driving in Mexico itself is a whole other story—got lost at least three times every day! Many near accidents. Believe me, it’s not a trip for everyone.
I went to Mexico because I needed time away from home to reflect on my life, but I figured I should make the most of my trip. I wrote in my book, 1001 Ways to Save Money, to engage in medical/dental tourism but I never tried it myself before until now. I want to share my experience in this newsletter.