It’s been a full month and a few weeks now since I moved back to Maui. I now have some basis to track my expenses on and get a feel for how affordable it will be out here. As I have mentioned in the past, whether I can stay and for how long is dependent on my ability to come away at the end of the month with a profit, even a small one. If I find myself losing money every month, then changes will need to be made.
This past month was a green one. I came out ahead, not by much but enough to be encouraging. I had some extra bonus income this past month, a one time thing, which means I adjusted my numbers accordingly and still came out ahead, so it was a good month.
Rent is fixed and there is not much I can do short of moving to someplace cheaper, which right now ain’t gonna happen. I’m perfectly comfy here. The place needs a lot of work but after spending years on small sailboats, it’s more than enough. I get along with the two wimmen folk and paid my next month’s rent a few days early which really put me in good graces with them. I try to stay out of the way, clean up after myself, and chip in a little extra now and then for general supplies. Nonetheless, experience has taught me to never settle. I still check the ads everyday being on the lookout for something more better. Never know when it could all come crashing down.
Food is the second biggest expense, and one of the more difficult to control. Mana Foods remains my go to place for most of my eats. While I do find bargains there, and I’ve started cooking more at the house, it still is a tad high for some things. I made several attempts to go into town and hit some of the grocerterias for cheaper stuff but without much luck.
My latest adventure was going to the Target where it was rumored they had good prices on stuff. When I got there I grabbed a basket and headed down an aisle only to be rudely directed in the other direction by some little minimum wage worker bee. Apparently some aisles are one way only. Why? Who the fuck knows? I dodged a few more worker bees who spewed out the classic, ‘May I help you?’, the worst thing you can say to a customer as anyone with a reasonable amount of retail training can tell you. I did find some things at some cheap prices and loaded up the basket. Dodging some more worker bees and more than a few customers who believed their shopping carts gave them the right to aim for my feet, I made it to the checkout line. After all my treasures were scanned I inserted my bank card into the reader where it was promptly declined. After repeated attempts failed I gave up. I knew my card was good, which it was having tried it later successfully at another store, and the reader was at fault. Try convincing the mouth breather worker bee on the other side of the counter of this? Good luck. I left all the stuff on the counter and walked out.
Never fails, the bigger the corporation gets, the less easy it becomes to do business with them. They lose sight of their original purpose and worry too much about which direction one should be permitted to walk down an aisle. I won’t be going back to Target anytime soon.
So back to the food budget. I will simply have to be a bit more careful about what I spend money on. Eating out is a luxury. Not counting the occasional $1.99 pizza at Costco I only ate out once this past month. It was good but dropping $20 for a meal is a bit much when you are really counting the pennies. Said $20 buys a lot of food, as opposed to a single meal. I will just have to be careful. I’m not big on restaurants as it is so I won’t miss much of anything.
As for other expenses, nothing out of the ordinary. I did pick up a pair of board shorts, some other minor odds and ends but these were one time expenses. Even so, November will be sure to bring the occasional odd necessity. To start with, I need to change the address on my drivers license which will incur some cost. No doubt some other expense will crop up, it always does.
It all adds up at the end of the month but as I said, if the month is green, even a little bit, it’s a good thing. As for everything else, it’s going pretty good.
The weather has been beautiful despite the big storm last week. I feel a helluva lot better. The coughing is almost completely gone. The clean air is so much more better than the pollen laden crap back in those damn hills of Pa. I can’t tell by looking but I feel like I may have lost a little weight. I walk a lot more and don’t seem to run out of breath so bad walking up the hill. The depression I was going through is pretty much in the past. It was a lot worse this summer than I let on. I will not go through such an ordeal again. If I never went back to Pa. it would be fine by me. But, relatives still live there and the time may come to go back to take care of things, but not like before. Get in and get out. The place drains one of life. These islands fill one back up again.
So, looking forward to the coming months. I just need to keep close tabs on the budget, sock away a few dollars every month, and things will be fine. Hopefully I can start getting out and doing some things, for free of course, and get some more interesting posts here on the Fritter so I can rub it in to all of you stuck back on the mainland with the whole winter thingy going on.
Have fun and try to stay warm. Or..