Maxine is back at work, still a little stressed and doing estate stuff long-distance. The circ gals have been making a point of telling her how hard I worked while she was gone. Of course, the Curse of Suzy is always hovering: I messed up a few details, being so sick the last few weeks of her leave, and I didn't have time to catch and fix them before she got back. Yeah, she found them. Oh well.
BH put in his bids for The Airline, and it's a safe bet he'll be offered a position soon, but there's one snag - his pension. The Airline no longer has a traditional pension, so there's a sticky legal/policy issue. He started collecting his "old" pension when he turned 55, but if he goes back to work for The Airline, they tell him he has to stop collecting it until he "retires," again. That would make sense if The A were still connected to the pension plan in any way, and if he were to resume contributing to the plan, but no. He will be starting at zero, with a brand new 401k; it will be as if he has a pension he can't touch, from a past job. That would be fine with us if he weren't old enough to collect, but he is. He was allowed to start collecting it at age 55 while he was laid off, even though he never formally retired. If The A hadn't declared bankruptcy and ditched it's obligations, I'd be cool with it, but that's not the case. The only past obligation The A will honor is his seniority; it wouldn't cost them one thin dime to allow him to collect his old pension. Even without a new contract, his pay increase would be slightly more than his pension payment, so we'd still be ahead, but hey, we're greedy - we want both. So sue me.
I've been scouring Realtor.com for homes within commuting distance of our nation's capitol, and thanks to the real estate bust, we might be able to buy something a little nicer than a cold-water tar paper shack. If we can get our hands on a non-forged title. VA's taxes are lower than MD's, and its gun laws aren't very restrictive, so we're looking in that direction. (How does it come to pass that we must look up a state's gun laws simple because we don't intend to relinquish a family heirloom and a couple of handguns? That's just sad.) My next step is to look through the local newspapers to get a grasp of the mom-job market, and understand the local repercussions of all those short-sale/foreclosed homes. Thank God we don't have to look at school districts! If BH doesn't have a new contract (raise) or a pension payment, we can't afford to live separately for long, so we'll have to unload this place in a hurry. Fortunately, we've decided on terms for a FSBO contract that will be appealing to buyers, and give us something close to what this place is worth.
So I haven't been spending much time in Blogland, (although I'm researching a few details for a post on congressional term limits) and my Facebook garden is going to seed. The Minute Man's Wife gave me my very first blogger award, (!!!) and I'll be celebrating that in the next couple of days. http://minutemanswife.blogspot.com/2011/06/power-trippin-overload.html
Thanks MMW! I feel like I've joined an elite club - is there a secret handshake?
PFC is thoroughly enjoying the West Coast, and he finally got to shoot a ".50 cal." I think he likes big guns. His "new" car is far from a lemon, but it needs quite a bit more work than he was told. He knew to expect as much, but still it rankles. Being from Hooterville, he's doubtless presumed to be a naive sucker. The end result is that he's on the phone a whole lot with BH, figuring out what's next and how best to do it. All good.