Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Whole New Meaning to the Words Christmas Money

About three and a half weeks ago, I used the Mexican postal service to send cheques to Canada. I now realize that if the postal people knew I was mailing cheques, they wouldn't have allowed it. The cheques aren't in Canada yet. Perhaps, they'll never get there.

No problem, I went to MailBoxes Etc. For $1,400 pesos, they would gladly send my envelopes to Canada. It would take 2 to 3 days to reach their destination.

But, when the polite young woman found out they were cheques, she refused to send them. In Mexico, a cheque and cash are the same thing, sometimes.

My next attempt to get the money to Canada was by way of PayPal. I live in Mexico, but have a Canadian credit card. What this means is, a Canadian PayPal account won't work, because of where I reside, and a Mexican PayPal Account won't work because I don't have a Mexican credit card. After a long conversation with a very polite PayPal representative; who works in Mexico City. I came to understand that I can't be a PayPal customer. We were speaking Spanish. He was very charming, polite and long winded. I was cranky, and didn't have much patience for politeness. In case you've never experience overwhelming politeness, it's very time consuming.

I reached the tail end of my ideas. And so, I telephoned my friend Joan. She is a former New Yorker, who deals with the TD bank. She told me that her bank send cheques to family and friends for birthdays, etc. I'd add Christmas, but Joan is Jewish.

I phoned my bank. That service isn't offered. But, I could do an email transfer. The first bank representative I spoke with told me that I needed the transit number, institution number and account number in order to transfer money from my account to some else's account.

Since I have three people to send money to, I thought, at that point, I needed three sets of banking information. I tried reaching my son, my nephew's girlfriend and my cousin.

Neither my nephew's girlfriend nor my nephew have bank accounts. Strange, but true. But, my nephew's girlfriend's sister-in-law has a bank account. I told her the information I required would be on her cheques. She doesn't have cheques. She telephoned her bank and got the information. Are you lost, or are you following me?

I went online and discovered that the information the first online banking person gave me was incorrect. I don't need the transit, institution and account information. But, since I had the information, the second online banking staff person checked. Apparently my nephew's girlfriend's sister--in-law deals with a credit union, which may or may not be part of the system the banks are using to transfer funds between accounts utilizing different financial institutions. So far, I've been unable to reach her again to ask her to check with her credit union.

I'm not going to bore you with anymore details. Let's just say, I'm on day two of my attempt to send Christmas money to Canada. It's a learning curve, that's for sure. So far, no confirmation on whether anyone has been able to get their money. Each transaction is at a different stage.

Day three has arrived. No one is ever home when I call. No one seems to be checking emails or going to facebook.

Oh well, maybe I'll just keep the money.

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