Sunday, July 20, 2008

Cars, Planes and Boats - Upper Left Hand Corner Version

I haven't written any about any of our excursions lately, because we haven't been anywhere together lately.

Over Memorial Day we took a family excursion. She and I took with her 82 year old mother to Whidbey Island, Washington for a family wedding. It was a quick trip. We left early Friday morning Memorial Day weekend and returned late Monday, the same weekend. I was sure it was worth the effort for her mother. I wasn't sure it would be enjoyable.

Friday 5:00 AM CDT Wakeup.

Typical weekend breakfast. English muffins, and poached eggs.

Friday 6:00 AM CDT The Mother-in Law Arrives.

Friday 6:30 AM CDT Leave for the Airport.

Mother in Law is met by a Skycap (are the still called that(?) with a wheel chair, you see she doesn't get around very well.

Friday 8:00 AM CDT Departure.

Friday 9:30 AM CDT Arrive Dallas.

The arrival at DFW was without incident. However we had a significant trek to make from Terminal A to Terminal D in less that two hours, with an elderly disabled passenger.

Plane is met by another Skycap(?) and wheelchair and we traverse DFW almost diagonally from one corner to the other. We used two wheel chairs, 3 electric cars and 2 elevators.

It took every bit of time we had to get to the gate and we barely had time to purchase some bag lunches before pre-boarding the flight.

Friday 2:30 PM PDT Arrive Sea-Tac Airport.

Again we were met by a Skycap(?) and transferred to a rental car shuttle and eventually to our rental SUV for the 90 minute drive to our rented house, with a stop ar a grocery store for provisions.

Friday 4:00 PM PDT Arrive waiting line for the Mukilteo - Whidbey Island Ferry.

2 hour wait for the ferry on an holiday weekend. We later heard that one of the wedding guests had "cut line" and others called ahead so they were forced to go back to the end and start over.

Friday 6:00 PM PDT Disembark the Mukilteo -Whidbey Island Ferry and find the way our bay side rental cottage.

Friday Evening the bride's extended family (of which we are part) gave a party at the Lodge they rented. A nice time was had by all.

Washington State style Gumbo and Shrimp Etouffe was served. That was interesting. No roux at all and the Gumbo had carrots in it. We wondered if Paul Prudhomme was even known there.

Saturday 10:00 AM PDT Breakfast.

Typical weekend breakfast. English muffins, ham, and poached eggs.

She and I had a chance to get out and see some of the Island. We went to a Local Seafood Market and Farmer's market. We bought a bunch of stuff for a planned special meal for the next day. We even managed to visit a winery.

Saturday 4:00 PM PDT Wedding.

Outside, overlooking a pond. The Groom and groomsmen in Navy Dress Whites.

Saturday 4:30 PM PDT Reception.

The reception was in a renovated barn, just steps away from the wedding. An early evening and great nights sleep.

Sunday 10:00 PM PDT Breakfast.

Typical weekend breakfast. English muffins, ham, and poached eggs.

We spent much of the day simply exploring the area around our house, walking the pebble beach and enjoying the views.

After Lunch we took a driving tour of the island visiting several picturesque touristy little towns and their shops. Including a trip to the north end go the island and Deception Pass State Park.

Sunday 6:00 PM PDT Dinner.

Fresh pacific salmon, poached in Whidbey Island wine and fresh dill. With a fresh herb salad, organic asparagus and more Whidbey Island Wine.

Monday 7:00 AM PDT Wakeup.

Monday 8:00 AM PDT Breakfast.

Typical weekend breakfast. English muffins, ham, and poached eggs.

Monday 9:00 AM PDT Leave the Cottage.

Reverse the arrival process.

Monday 9:30 AM PDT Board the Ferry.

Monday 11:00 AM PDT Arrive Sea-Tac Airport.

Monday 2:30 PM PDT Depart.

Monday 8:15 PM CDT Arrive DFW.

Monday 10:00 PM CDT Depart DFW.

Monday 11:30 PM CDT Arrive New Orleans.

Tuesday 1:00 AM CDT Go to Bed.

It was a very enjoyable trip. Went to work the next day.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The FED Declares War on the Self Employeed

I have been following the "Housing Crisis", which as far as I can tell was largely triggered by lenders willing to lend money to anyone with a pulse for a transaction fee. Aided and abetted by the residential Real Estate industry and some political interest groups and politicians under a variety of excuses to expand home ownership.

The recent announcement by the FED to require "proof of income" is a major change and impediment to free markets. In effect the only "proof of income" will become a "proof of tax".

Taxes will set you free.

I am a victim of previous policies which discriminated against the self-employed. Prior standards implied that unless you had a "steady job", (which could end at any moment) you were a credit risk, regardless of your FICO score, your history of paying off loans or cash in your business, regardless of how long your business had been in operation (in my case more than 20 years). The whole process was/is stupid and offensive.

I wonder why employees of mine who have a year or less of tenure are able to get mortgages much easier than I can. It seems perfectly clear to me that if my business goes south, I am the last man standing. It also seems obvious that my history as a self-employed person is less important than anyoneelse's W-2.