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Sad Observation

October 27th, 2017 at 12:51 pm

Last week a weekly local paper in their legal notices listed all the delinquent property taxes in real estate for the year of 2016. I should have kept the paper and tallied up how much the county is owed by these folks. It's no wonder we have problems paying our bills in the county. I always read through it to make sure our names are not in it, in case we weren't credited with our tax bill payment or forgot something. Sadly, I saw names of people I knew. Two couples seem to have their names in it each year. I wonder if they pay the penalty and pay them off or if they are eventually going to have their home sold or auctioned off for taxes.

One couple that I know was listed and it just makes me sad. Their taxes weren't hugely expensive. I don't know the wife, just of her, but I know the mister and he works six days a week. He's 62 years old and he looks twenty years older. He works as a butcher in a chain grocery store -- he has for over 38 years that I know of. We were shopping and I noticed him going through the clearance rack getting some bread, cereal, and some other item, all incredibly marked down for his lunch. I wonder if they are living hand to mouth. It's not anything I would ask. I know he drives an older car so it isn't like he's blowing money on fast automobiles. I also wonder why he doesn't pack a lunch instead of buying something each day unless the store frowns on them bringing lunches.

I sort of wonder what happened in his life. I was in high school when I met him; I was working for Coca-Cola working at grocery stores giving out samples in the late 1970s. He was a butcher then and single, and seemingly doing well. Then our lives separated because I went to college and he was moved to a different store. Then about three years ago he was transferred to the store we frequent and we recognized each other and greeted each other.

I know I'm blessed. I have a wonderful husband and we usually see eye to eye on expenses. We both have pensions and we have money saved. Our home is paid off. And we are enjoying retirement. My friend asked me how I could retire before he did -- he's 8 years old than I. I said I planned for retirement and left it at that. I sort of wonder if that is why they are having problems. I think a big part of life's troubles is due to lack of planning. I realize there are things that happen in people's lives they can't control, but for so many, they grumble about not being able to retire because there was no forethought.

Anyway, it really kind of made me sad thinking of my friend. I hope they get the taxes paid on their home. I don't know them well enough to even inquire about finances. Just someone from my past and my observation.

7 Responses to “Sad Observation”

  1. Bluebird Says:

    I agree with your comments. What's even worse is that we know of several families who live in our area, both parents employed, but they don't feed their children dinner (I hope they get a free school lunch), one's house is in foreclosure, one family are hoarders with stuff piled up in their homes, but they have a child who competes in horsebackriding, while the other kids are left to fend for themselves and eat junk because that's all that's there. It makes me ill. I've fed one of the kids, I wish he would come by more often because I worry about him. I worry about them all, actually. The parents don't have their priorities in line. I don't understand how parents don't feed their children and make sure their basic needs are met.

  2. rob62521 Says:

    Bluebird, those children are blessed that you are taking an active role in their lives watching out for them and feeding them when you can. Why people bring children in the world and then neglect them is beyond me.

  3. Amber Says:

    Thanks for sharing. Your post reminded me of what I need to do (plan and save) as well as continue with what I'm doing and that's paying down debt and saving.

  4. PatientSaver Says:

    I think you're right...probably a combination of lack of planning and perhaps having a low income all your life. I don't think butchers in a grocery store make a whole lot of money. And, some people just don't know how to manage their money and tend to blow it on instant gratification stuff. It is a little sad. We'd all like to think we can "take it easy," at least a little, when we retire....that all our decades of hard work will work for us in the end. I really can't see myself working (at least f/t) into my 60s. Part-time, yes.

  5. anonymous Says:


    I've had my name/parcel published for deliquency on real estate taxes. Sometimes it is lack of income and serious illness diagnoses that result in mounting medical bills. And if your paycheck to paycheck existence before the hardship it can be really hard to get out of the hole.

  6. rob62521 Says:

    Thank you anonymous for responding. You make great points.

  7. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    I am so sorry to hear about the problems for your friend.

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