The Main Man…

If I was a cynic, I’d swear that The Provider planned this passage of events all along to limit the amount of damage I might do this week!

Because he’s away. Fishing with the boys off the Top End somewhere and undoubtedly having the time of his life. Which will have to pause for a second when he gets close enough to land (and phone reception) to receive my lengthy text message.

Because like Houston, we do indeed have a problem.

I was visiting sports physio Andy the other afternoon with Son#2. We’ve seen Andy a fair bit this year, to the point we’re now friends on first-name basis. Son#2 had tackled a boy of South Pacific origin during a school rugby league game… a boy much, MUCH larger than himself. He copped a very heavy knock above the knee for his trouble, resulting in his knee swelling up to resemble one from a contestant on the Biggest Loser, pre-weight loss. All I can say is thank God the grand final was last week!

I took a look and very quickly decided we needed Andy’s professional opinion just to be sure (knee is fine, no ligament damage, just very bruised and will be okay in a couple of weeks). Strolling out to reception to sort the paper work, I automatically handed over my credit card to settle our account. “Oh, I’m sorry,” the 20-something receptionist says a few moments later, “it’s says it’s been declined.”


I think my shock at this news must have been fairly apparent. “I’ll try it again,” she said rather quickly, “sometimes it’s the line. It drops out every now and then.” I’m standing there trying not to notice the packed reception area behind me and feeling my pulse rate elevate by the second. Why does it suddenly seem so quiet when you’re in these situations? AGAIN my card was declined. WTF? It was nothing short of a miracle that I had enough cash in my wallet (a very rare occurrence) to pay. My only other option would’ve been leaving one of the boys as collateral! Two steps out of there, I was on the phone.

Turns out our card had been scammed. Some lowlife had tried to use it to buy flights on United Airlines and Philippines Air that same day so the bank had quite rightly blocked it, which was why it kept coming up as declined. We’d need to have new cards issued as the old card was now compromised. Okay, great, let’s do that, I said. There was just one problem – The Provider is the main account holder, not me, so they needed to speak to him before they could do this.

Oh, FFS.

I can’t fault my bank, they did what they should have. And the lady I spoke to was extremely sympathetic, explaining that if I needed to use the card urgently to just call, they’d unblock it so I could use it, then re-block it afterward. But we’d still have to wait for The Provider to come home to sort it out properly, once and for all.

It’s such a pain in the arse. And feels rather Victorian. And of course this would happen while my other half is totally incommunicado, wouldn’t it? I was able to make other arrangements for money so it’s not like we’re destitute until he returns but my inner self who is TOTALLY capable of running her own life was feeling a bit put out. She doesn’t need a husband to ‘handle’ things! *indignant snort* Anyone who knows us realises that this is soooo not the way our life together is.  

But rules are rules. And when The Provider is home on Friday we will deal with that particular dumb rule then. As well as addressing the ‘main’ cardholder thing. Can you have ‘joint’ cardholders? Or perhaps I should just have my own card as well… you know, just for emergencies? That’d fix that. Hee hee.

Have you ever had your credit card number scammed? What happened? How helpful was your bank?

6 responses to “The Main Man…”

  1. Mumabulous Avatar

    Oh you poor thing. What a right royal pain! Fortunately I haven't experienced anything like that. Also I have my own cards in my own name. It comes with the territory when you get together with your partner just that little bit later in life.
    Hope everything gets sorted out soon.
    Love Mumabulous

  2. Groovy Grandma Avatar
    Groovy Grandma

    Yes – it has happened to me three times this last year -The last time I found out about it, the Visa people rang me on Sunday night to ask if I had just paid someone in Sweden $4000.00 – when I said absolutely not – and I don't have $4000.00 anywhere, she said "Thats good because we declined it and have closed that card. We will send you a new one immediately. It is good the the banks are on to it so quickly. But I know exactly how you feel.

  3. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    It was a pain alright. You don't realise how often it happens either – since this post I've had heaps of people telling me about their own story with credit card fraud. Just terrible!

    I used to have my own credit card but ended up cancelling it years ago because I felt I didn't need it – my name was on The Provider's one and we didn't need TWO. Might have to rethink that, lol! Everything's all sorted now, thank goodness.


  4. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    $4000.00 from Sweden? That's a lot of stuff from IKEA! Thank goodness the banks are pretty good with this sort of stuff – I've been amazed by how often it happens to people.

    It is incredibly inconvenient and annoying when it does happen though. Only the second time it's happened to us, hopefully the last!


  5. Janine Fitzpatrick Avatar

    You poor thing. It hasn't happened to me, but did happen to friends of mine, while they were on holidays and the banks weren't quite so quick, they manage to rack up thousands by buying products from an American chain store, they just kept buying under a couple of hundred in a go so it wasn't obvious. Unfortunately it was a debit card and my friends had something like $10,000 sitting in it because they were building a new garage and had transferred the money over to pay the builders, they didn't realise until they went to pay the bill and realised they were missing thousands.

    The issue of finances in your own name is a big one, I seem to recall when a partner in my Brother-in-law's accounting firm passed away, the firm had to organise money for his widow because everything was in his name and automatically froze once he died because he was the "primary account holder". I'm not sure if that is still the case – all our accounts are in joint names all I've got in mine is one old credit card which is racked up to it's limit anyway so no use to me at all.

  6. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    Oh my god, your poor friends! That must have been terrible for them. I was lucky the bank was on to it, quick smart. Hubby is home now so it's all sorted and new cards are on their way.

    Most of our other financial stuff is all in joint names so it's only the credit card that's set up like this. I *used* to have my own credit card as well, years ago, but cancelled it because I figured we didn't need two. Trying to reduce my carbon footprint and all that. Hmmm.

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About Me

Hi, I’m Sarah!

Former wild-child of the 80’s, classic rock fan and loyal friend to a particularly awesome group of people. Forever planning to write more. Fervently wishes she lived at the beach. Loves the mighty All Blacks. Rather partial to a cheeky glass of red.

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