Friday, July 24, 2015

End of Internet?

I am probably going to need to disconnect from internet.  It will make keeping up on the blog harder but not completely impossible.  I might be able to keep it going somewhat with occasional library access.  I hate to cut off internet, because I had hoped to fund raise online for the nonprofit.  However, I've not done well at extending a donor base.  Thank you so much to those who have donated and undying gratitude to those who have done so multiple times.

I don't raise enough to cover the vet care let alone food and litter.  Cutting internet will let me buy two bags of cat food almost per month.   That internet deal, my latest attempt to keep internet going here, with comcast, will run out anyway first of November and then most likely I will not find another I can afford.  So at best, I would have internet another three months anyway, before being forced to disconnect.

It's a hard decision but I don't want to give up the cats.  They have to eat and so do I.

It's the only extra in my life that I could cut so as to help myself and the cats survive.  I do not eat out or buy clothes or anything like that.  I'm still trying to find a way around it, but looks dismal.

I've got to come up with a new way to live, to survive, as costs go up for everything.  Gas is still $3 a gallon here, even though it was supposed to have gone down in price.  Not here.  And the state is considering huge gas tax hikes to discourage driving and pay for road improvements.  The city just increased the franchise fee they charge the electric company which means electric prices will go up again.  Water/sewer costs here are extremely high and I don't know why.  This is a small town with virtually no city services to speak of.  I doubt living costs will go down and my SS check isn't going to go up enough to cover all the continual increases.  There is no recreation available without driving fairly long distances.

I have to have a car to be able to get groceries, cat litter, cat food, and to take cats to the vet, go to the doctor and to escape cul de sac isolation now and then.  So dumping the car is not an option.

My only options to decrease costs come with somehow decreasing the cost of utilities, food for me or food, litter costs for the cats.  I think I can decrease food costs for me by being much stricter with myself and making one trip monthly to Salem, to get most of my food at a far cheaper cost at Winco.

We do not have an affordable grocery store in town although Winco is coming to Albany and I can't wait for that store to be built.

I'm thinking of ways to reduce garbage costs, by instead of paying for the bigger can, for primarily dirty cat litter, sifting the litter of feces and then putting the rest, all just sawdust, into the yard debris container.  My friend said it is entirely wood, with some added urea, which makes it even more desirable for compost, which is what the garbage company does with it, then resells it, at inflated price.  She said to to quit putting it in my garbage if I sift it.  I think she's right, but I could also compost it here myself if I could make a suitable compost bin.  Right now I just have a pile and have no tool to turn it with.  A friend in Portland takes her sifted pellet fuel litter sawdust to a place that takes it for free, to turn into compost.  They love getting it.

That would reduce costs by about $12 per month.  But that is the most I can reduce costs there.

I'm thinking of just taking cold showers.  Wouldn't hurt me.  I'll start by setting a 3 minute timer for showers.  It would be hard to reduce the water/sewer because there is a basic rate, that is already almost $90 per month that includes a basic amount of water, over which the charge goes up.  I rarely exceed the basic rate.  That leaves only electric, garbage and internet as reduction possibilities.

I'm thinking I might not need a refrigerator.  It's usually mostly empty anyhow.  The refrigerator, dryer and water heater cost the most in energy use.  I rarely use any hot water now, only for showers, or for coffee water, but that is heated on the stove.  If I can switch to cold showers, I can turn off the hot water heater.  It will just take some getting used to.

I'm trying to think of ways so that I can have a bit more money in my life rather than the daily difficult grind to just survive.

I will not feel sorry for myself over the internet thing.  I have been lucky to have it.  Many many people in this area cannot afford such a thing, nor any TV.  I am lucky to have that old antenna atop the house to pull in a few channels.  And I can always rent DVD's from Redbox now and then, for a bit of entertainment.  I am fairly convinced now this will be something I need to do and I'm sure I will adjust in time.




10 comments :

  1. I am so sorry, but completely understand your priorities.

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    1. Yes, food is a priority, for both me and the cats.

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  2. I hope you are able to stay connected. The internet is so important now, it should be available very cheaply to the less well off who need it.

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    1. I wish it was affordable also, but it is not, it is expensive.

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  3. That's a great pity. You might find some way to stay connected, but you do have to eat and pay your bills, sometimes money just won't stretch...

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    1. Yes, its true. Sometimes it won't stretch. I've been stretching it to keep internet a long time, but its caught up with me.

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  4. I work in a library and we have people who come in every day for the internet. It's a great resource. There are also a lot of places around now that have free access. My son didn't have internet for a while because he couldn't afford it. He found if he sat in the local Hardy's parking lot, he could hook up to the internet inside. They didn't seem to mind that he did it because there were other parking spaces around.

    Have you even talked with the local food bank/church to contact you if they get cat food donated? I have heard that they don't pass it out because they are afraid people themselves will eat it.

    Also, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and other youth organizations do things to help non profits all of the time. Both of my sons are Eagle Scouts and I see many projects that could be done for you. You might try contacting some of them.

    Good luck. I admire you convictions and the willingness to do what you think needs to be done even when things get hard.


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    1. Lots of people here use the library for internet because they can't afford it themselves. The library also has wifi, so one can, if one has a laptop, which I don't, sit in the parking lot and use it. Someone I know does that because she doesn't like so much the restrictions inside and because its more private. She used to sit outside Macdonalds for the same reason but they limit use, she said, and caught on she was using it a lot and restricted her access I guess.

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  5. I'll miss your voice! Hope you can find a way to continue sharing your experiences. Your passion is contagious! You've made a difference, even to cats that you've never met.

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    1. Thank you! One brother is telling me he'll help when I can't pay the internet bill, so for now, I'm back in business!

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