Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas Shopping and A Women's Timeshare

I went Christmas shopping yesterday. I loathe shopping. I have suffocating anxiety the entire shopping trip because we barely pay our bills and do not have money to spend on scarves and Nintendo games. On top of this, I am clausterphobic in the crowded stores with humming fluorescent lights and I usually end up with a great, big nauseating headache. I try to shop online, but shipping and handling and all that stuff can really add up. Yesterday I decided to brave the crowds for one hour because I had $60 in gift cards to the local department store and I could get the sweats, shoes, and sleepers that my husband and daughter needed for Christmas. I saw signs all over the store that advertised 15% OFF FOR OPENING A STORE CREDIT CARD. I decided to do this and save money. None of the signs mentioned that the charges for the items you just purchased have to go onto the credit card to obtain these savings. I realized this at the end of the transaction and, with a humiliated, red face, I insisted that the whole transaction be reversed. I obviously cannot pay a credit card bill with gift cards. Everyone was tense and irritable and had no problem verbalizing how annoyed they were that I was too poor to pay a credit card bill when it arrived. Merry Christmas!!

My coworker and I frequently commiserate on the constant demands put on working mothers, especially during the holidays when the financial and familial demands skyrocket. Our solution is the women's timeshare. I know most timeshares are extravagant getaways on beaches or ski slopes. The women's timeshare can be simple. All we want is a small apartment with a clean bathroom, a bed, a television, a few books, and a stash of gourment foods and coffees. Most importantly, our families (immediate and extended) must not know it exists and cannot contact us while we are there. A few days in the timeshare and I might even be able to tackle more Christmas shopping.

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