Maria really needs a backbone… I think I have a problem with being too nice.

25 06 2011

Items I have learned today:

Today I have learned that I really need to stand up for myself a bit more, otherwise people tend to walk all over me! (well, I’ve known that for awhile, but still)..

(and back to regularly scheduled Australian slang programming)

-Bathers = swimsuits
-Trainers = sneakers/tennis shoes
-Solarium = tanning salon
-Bottle shop = Liquor Store (and beer/wine/any booze is ONLY available there, you can’t pick it up at mini-marts or grocery stores here).

ANYWAY.
I remember once when I was ordering coffee at a Starbucks in Seattle (I know Melburnians.. for SHAME.. I have had Starbucks coffee.. GASP). Anyway, I thought they had given me the wrong drink, so I sat there and instead of going up to the barista and asking… I cowered back and whispered to my friend “Does this look like a tall machiacco? I dunno, it seems a little to small? What do you think?” My friend replied “Why don’t you just ask them?” I answered “Because I have no balls!” The barista then turned around to the both of us and said “you seriously need to grow some, and yes it is a tall machiacco.” AWESOME. The point of that story, besides showing my embarrassment that the barista heard our entire conversation, is that no matter what the situation, I seem to have a hard time putting my foot down, even when it comes to trivial enough matters like making sure I’m getting the right amount of coffee.

So as you all know, I just moved back to Melbourne from Sydney. What you don’t know, is that I have now been screwed over by my second roommate there. I neglected to write about her before because I considered her to be a good friend and did not want to hurt her feelings. It’s not like that’s my intention now, but what I don’t understand is how she can feel OK about ripping someone off, especially someone that she called her friend? How does that work? How do you claim friendship but then steal their money?

Old Pic - but pretty reflective of how I am feeling at the moment

Old Pic - but pretty reflective of how I am feeling at the moment


Ok, let me get back to the basics of the story. I left Sydney on 20th May (again, this is how they write the date over here). I think I had really bad roommate luck in Sydney. This particular roommate KNEW that I had just lost 1200 from the other crazy roommate, and also knew that I wasn’t able to save up any money while living in Sydney. She originally promised me that she would have my 1000 bond returned to me “right away.” Right away then turned into “sometime this week.” That then turned into “as soon as I find someone to live here.” Long story short, I finally got part of my bond back today… over a month later. To be fair, she did recently lose her job and has had difficulty finding a new one, and apparently it took her some time to find someone to move in. But NONE of those problems are my fault!! So first off I have to wait quite a bit to get my bond back, a fact that i can get over, but am still frustrated by considering I had no choice but to dip into my “traveling/saving” fund.

Now here’s the kicker. I check my bank account today and 850 of my 1000 bond has been returned because APPARENTLY the other 150 went to an electricity bill! WTF!! Dude, I lived there for TWO months. ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS? I think not. In her drunken stupor she once went off on a tangent to me about how cheap electricity was and that her last bill was only 170 dollars for 3 months. So explain to me how I then get charged that much when I wasn’t even there for a full billing cycle??? Nor was I even around much to use the F*ing electricity in the first place. Granted she didnt steal from me a huge amount of money, but that’s not it, that’s not what gets under my skin. It’s the principle of the whole thing, the fact that she decided to take the money to begin with.

I had been nothing but nice to her. Case and point – About 3 weeks in to not having my bond back – I sent her this message:

“Hey Sydney Roommate Number Two,
I hope you are doing well.
This email has been really hard for me to write as I don’t want to jeopardize our friendship or hurt you in anyway, but I really need to talk to you about the bond.
I understand that things have been a bit difficult for you recently, and I am sorry for that, but at the same point I really do need my bond back. In the ideal world, I would have it all back by the end of June, but if it is going to easier for you, I am willing to work something else out (maybe half this month, and half at some point later on?).
The fact of the matter is that my bond really should not be contingent on you finding someone else to move in, the money should not have been spent. I am really not trying to be rude and demanding, but its getting to the point where I am being put in a really bad position financially (as you know, I had already previously lost 1200 and this is putting me over 2000 behind).
Please let me know what we can work out.”

And this is what happens.. She returns what she decides she wants to return and full on takes advantage of me. I seriously wonder how far I would have gotten with “b*tch give me my money back now!” Ok, maybe not in those exact words, but still.. my point is.. apparently being nice (at least in my case) only seems to get you screwed.
Ugh.
Anyway.
Had to share, that’s all for now folks.


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3 responses

25 06 2011
juliyya

I suspect that Australian law gives you the right to see evidence of the amount she claims to be your portion of the electric bill, that she is not entitled to pull a dollar amount out of thin air. Perhaps you should inform the Fair Trade/Tourism office that another Sydney resident has stolen bond money from a tourist. One wonders how common this type of theft is.

27 06 2011
Theresa

Man, that really sucks. Just keep haranguing her until she gives you the rest of the money back. It might take months, but there you are. Call, text, email until she shows you the bill.

And cross fingers for better flatmates and roommates in the future!

28 06 2011
mariavandenburg

I love my flatmate now, so all is well on that point.
In terms of getting my money back – it’s doubtful, as the message I got today when I asked for a copy of the bill (again, for the 3rd time) was to “delete her number, and f*ck off.”

Sigh. I think what bothers me most about the whole situation is the fact that she just doesn’t seem to care. Oh well, I really need to let it all go and put it behind me.

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