Saturday, August 08, 2015

Strange Day at the Grange

Today, I was out at the grange flea market for just over 7 long hours that felt much longer because I was worn out.  I am not sure why I felt so exhausted.

I've had a trying few weeks.  No money, broke, from helping out the old woman at the trailer park.  Gas costs, to and from, and up to the clinic where the cats were fixed, did me in.  Doesn't take much.

I figured I'd slide through it and I have, but only because of some help from friends.   After living on the brink for days without money, I began to think about things, like "so this is what it would be like in a disaster" and "what if I never had money again, how would I survive", those kinds of things.

It was good to realize I could survive probably for months with very little but the stored goods I now have, just things like some $1 lb bags of lentils and rice.  The first thing I did when I got some money was go buy 3 more $1 lb bags of lentils. We are lucky we can do that here, find that much food for that little money.  It was a pride thing in the end, but my friends chastised me for not asking for help when I needed it.  I'm good now.

Well, I got those cats to their dental appointments despite it all, then it took a few days to recover from the exhaustion of the marathon it is to drive up there and back, with cats, in one day.  Tain't easy on me.

Yesterday, a friend from another town stopped by while I was out and left a bunch of food for me.  Things like carrots and apples, cheese, cucumbers and tomatoes from her garden, bananas.   I was shocked into tears.  Same day, I found three boxes on my porch from Amazon, each containing 24 cans of cat food.  No name anywhere.  Again, I was bent to tears.  Menopausal hormonal shifts of late make me easily emotional.

But then again, help from friends, some anonymous completely, are like getting presents dropped from outer space.  It's a wonder thing, that makes me crazy like a kid at Christmas.

Times are hard for everyone living on the edge.  Prices are high and edging higher, not just for food and gas, but also for utilities.  Making news lately---the City of Portland has about 2000 homeless people now, sleeping on the streets at night.  That number could be a small town of its own.

Some is blamed on drugs and mental illness but also some on the gentrification of Portland.   Housing is crazy expensive and low cost housing for those living on fixed incomes or working low wage jobs, nearly impossible to find.  One little problem, like a car breaking down, or a health issue that keeps a person from work or paying bills on time, and you're homeless.

I am one of the lucky ones, with a roof over my head.

I went out to the grange today, to stand behind a flea market table.  To say we had few customers would be stretching it.  I think I cleared $13.   Oh well.  A guy came in and wanted to warn me about doctors and someone might be paying them, here in the valley, to kill older people.  I listened intently.  What else was I going to do.  He didn't buy anything.

I was so tired, I fought to stay awake or even partially alert. Two of the sellers usually there had opted out today.  They were the ones I usually chatted with.  The fields nearby were being cut which threw massive amounts of materials into the air.  My allergies kicked up.  I watched the clock.  Tick, tick, tick hoping soon it would be 3:00 and it finally was 3:00.  I packed the stuff and came home.

I don't think I'll get a table again.  I've watched over the times I've been there and seen that it is more of a man's flea market.  Most of the people who come in are men and most stuff that is bought is man stuff, like tools and compressors and things like that, outside of the DVD's one guy sells, which people buy.  Most of what I have tried to sell there are kitchen items, knickknacks and books.  I may do a garage sale to try to sell what is left.  It was a great experience however. You live and learn.
















10 comments :

  1. I suspect your exhaustion was just things 'catching up'. You have been very busy physically and emotionally. Surviving (and wondering whether you will) on very little money is also stressful. Which is exhausting.
    I hope you find an even (positive) keel soon.
    And I love that the fairies have been delivering to you.

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    1. Probably so. Allergies also wear me out. I've never had much money so dealing with low to non existent funds is fairly normal. But it can get to me!

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  2. I hope things get better for you soon and am glad you have such good friends.

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  3. Accepting help from others is a hard thing for me and something I'm trying to do better with. I'm happy that you have people in your life that want to help you and you are learning to accept their help.

    Around here, churches and other groups sponsor yard sales and they are usually filled with the kind of stuff you have. Renting the table usually isn't too much and they draw a fair amount of people. Not sure if they is common where you are, but it might be something to look into if you haven't already.

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    1. I'm going to try to find a better venue that gets more customers for sure! Thanks!

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  4. What lovely caring people to leave you things for free :)
    The heat would also make you tired, plus the worry of making ends meet..

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    1. All true, WA. I am very frugal, a total penny pincher, but I have some safeguards, like bags of rice, etc, in my cupboard for when I'm really at the end of my means. But the best thing I have is friends. I may not see them often but they are a phone call away when I'm in trouble. It's the best feeling ever, to know that.

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  5. Bless your heart. I have a friend in your area whose rent rose so high that she's currently relying on help from her parents. I'm thankful, as is she, for their assistance but she moved to the current place because costs rose in the previous apartment complex. I don't know what she will ultimately do despite a highly responsible job and wish there were an easy answer. Thank heaven for good friends and giving hearts.

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    1. It is tough, with rentals so in demand, not just because of the university, across the river, where rent is even higher, but because so many people lost their houses, and then became renters. But job income doesn't match rent increases at all. If you're alone and cannot find an honest roommate (they are hard to find), it's even tougher. I was trying to tell someone yesterday, just chatting, that most people I know don't get cable or even internet and they couldn't grasp why that would be. Well duh, they cost a fortune.

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