Money, money, money

So I had SO MANY things I wanted to write about – the weekend trip to Snowplanet, Sheepworld, walking around the viaduct, Gracie’s cell phone, my new gym, but now I can only think of one thing. Money. I know it’s so crass to talk about money, but here I go… Maybe I’ll get to that other stuff here, maybe not.

The Professor is an EXCELLENT saver. Some could interpret that as cheap – in fact, the Professor himself might brag about that. But in all honestly, he’s been great about making sure we’ve put away money so we could do something epic with it. Like, say, for example, move to New Zealand for six months. (And I am giving him ALL the credit for this, because if it were up to me, we’d have $25.69 in savings and I’d have a closet full of shoes, so this is all him. Thanks, Sug.) But now that we’re here, on our epic adventure, we can’t get our money.

We couldn’t activate our NZ account until we were here, so we didn’t want to transfer money before then, in case we ran into problems accessing it. Ha! Joke’s on us!

Once we activated our NZ account, we tried to transfer money from our US bank to our local bank. US bank will only confirm that intention with a code they text. Except we’ve turned off our US phones. And they won’t accept our NZ numbers. We’ve been on a call with them; they believe that we are who we say we are and the rightful owners of the account (and therefore the money in it), but tell us there’s no way to get the money over here. So we’ve been withdrawing the maximum amount of cash allowed and then walking into the bank and depositing it into our account. Because EVERYTHING here is done by bank transfer – school tuition payments, gym payments, vacation house deposits. Everything. Also? That is *not* an efficient way to fill a bank account.

So then we tried the PayPal account. We’ve got money there, too. PayPal won’t even let me log into my account, because it’s detected a different IP address. PayPal can confirm I am who I say I am with a text or phone call. Except we’ve turned off our US phones. I called them and was able to provide them all the information they asked for – they said they believed who I was, but they needed to escalate to the Security Team. I was on hold for 36 minutes the first time with no sign of life, so I hung up and tried again. I was on hold for 23 minutes that time, with no indication anyone would ever pick up again, so I just hung up.

I appreciate the security – I swear I do. I worked at Equifax for almost 10 years – I get the importance of protecting your financial identities and accounts. I do. I really do. But I cannot believe that we cannot get our money. We are 16 days into this adventure. We cannot live like this for six months. It’s making me CA-RAY-ZEEE.


Aside from that, things have been fun – especially when we can use credit cards! I’ll post more about the weekend and my new gym later. I’ve got to run – well, walk one mile – to a conference with Tate’s teacher. Gracie will probably begin walking to school on her own this week, so we got her a cell phone. Like a flip phone from 1999. And she’s still thrilled with it. Has texted me about 18 times telling me she loves me. It’s so sweet. No internet access, but she can call and text us if she needs to. Also, it has an FM radio. Was that too pretentious to tell you? Too braggy? Here she is with her most prized possession, a $19 burner phone.

Enjoy your money, people!! And cross your fingers for the Professor – I’m pretty excitable, so this could get rough for him…

3 thoughts on “Money, money, money

  1. Hi Kathy,

    This has been a problem for us as well. Have you tried Transferwise? I have used it to move money to the US not the other way around. We also updated the phone number on an account to my sisters number. Then we coordinate codes over text and FaceTime. It’s inconvenient and time consuming but most things on this side of the world take more time. Enjoy the slower pace!



  2. Dear Kath!

    OMG – that $ thing is crazy! I know you can manage by sucking out dollars from your ATM, but would a short-term loan help until you get things straightened out? I could do that. I’m about to do a renovation and am sure the contractors won’t commit to anything for eons – and I’ve had cash just sitting in an account for months – don’t talk to me about how the market has gone up! But I’m serious, if I can help, just let me know.

    If you don’t pay me back, I’ll just fly to NZ and camp on your doorstep – wait, I was planning that anyway!

    Seriously – and with XOX,

    Martha Legare m. +1 404.815.7766



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