“Honey, our credit card’s been filched”

Ever had one of “those” days?

One of those days when everything is a little crazy and nuts and doesn’t quite seem to go right?

Those days when life hands you lemons and the only thing you can do is make lemonade over and over again.

The last twenty-four hours–no make that thirty-six hours–has been like that.  I can’t tell you all the details of this lovely stretch of challenges, but perhaps you’d like to hear a few morsels?

Yesterday morning–preparing for a wonderful trip to Marquette to visit the knee surgeon and pick up our daughter Kiah from the airport–I paused to fill up the car with gas at our local Holiday station.

Tossed the credit card cheerfully on the counter toward the clerk.  She swiped the darling through her machine.  The machine paused.  The machine gasped.  The machine suddenly spewed out a list of instructions.

“What’s that?” I ask, little suspecting.

“Oh, the computer sometimes does that,” she replies breezily.

She now has to enter at least 100 characters and numbers in her computer, attempting to clear the screen.  Nothing works.  She now has to call someone on the telephone and enter 500 more numbers.  She asks for my ID.  Yep, that’s who I am.   Looks like me anyway.

 Then she’s advised to call my credit card company.  Except they put her on hold.  I want to state right now to you readers:  I love my credit card.  It’s dear to this heart.  You know why?  It offers frequent flyer numbers, or whatever they call it these days.  At least three trips have been gifted through this credit card.  It’s our third child.

Finally–the clerk is still on hold–I sigh and say, “Hey, don’t know what this about, but how about I give you another credit card?”  (sigh, grumble, the $34.00 gas charges will not give flyer miles.  errr….)

She smiles in relief, advises me to call the credit card, and I scurry back to the car.  Pull off to the side, dial the credit card number on the back of the card, carefully articulating the digits to the automated system.

The automated system says, “I am sorry.  You will need to talk to a representative.”

The next voice that comes on the line:  Welcome to our Fraud Division.

Fraud division?  What’s happening?  I am suddenly wide awake and the heart is starting to pump more vigorously.  Horror stories threaten to engulf the edges of the brain.  Fraud?  Fraud?  What’s happened?

A nice young lady arrives on the telephone scene.

She wants to know my identification.  Address.  Phone number.  Last four digits of the social security number.  (ummm, darn, what are they?  Quick now!  Phew, got it.)  Zip code.

“Have you been in Texas?” she asks.

“Texas?” I parrot, looking around.  “NO!  I’m in L’Anse.  Michigan.”

“Someone has been charging on your card in Texas,” she says kindly.  “You can’t use your card any more.”

“Will we have to pay for the charges?”  I gasp.  “Since when?  How much?”

(Here the story gets fuzzy because I can’t recall exactly how much was charged.  Not a lot.  Maybe  a few hundred.  Since the previous afternoon.  No, indeed, you will not have to pay for the charges.  You’ll have to sign some paperwork verifying the charges which were not yours.)

Kathy sighs in relief, wants to hug credit card girl. 

“I appreciate you so much!” I gush.  “Thank you, thank you!  You guys are great!  Hey…I’m going downstate…WHEN CAN I GET MY NEW CARD?  You see, I really really need those frequent flyer miles…”

“We’ll try to get the card to you by Thursday,” she said. 

PHEW!

I scurried to Barry’s place of work.

“Honey, our credit card’s been filched!”

(Doesn’t the word “filch” sound so dramatic?)

Off we drive to Marquette.  To summarize part of the rest of our day:  Barry needs arthroscopic knee surgery for a torn meniscus. Our trip downstate to visit my parents must now somehow be adjusted, because Nurse Kiah and I must be home to help the invalid for his surgery. (We call her Nurse Kiah because she arrived after my gall bladder surgery in December and assisted admirably.)  Kiah’s plane was late, but she eventually arrived.

How did we make lemonade from lemons, you ask?  We appreciated the fraud division of the credit card company for catching the illegitimate transactions.  We appreciated that Barry’s knee is going to improve.  We’re trying to figure out alternative plans to go downstate.  And we watched a movie–Friends with Benefits–and went out for dinner–for the four additional hours we awaited Kiah’s plane.

When was the last time you had to make lemonade out of a day filled with lemons?

(P.S.  sorry I’m so far behind answering comments and visiting blogs–YIKES!  Too much happening these days…)

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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21 Responses to “Honey, our credit card’s been filched”

  1. Elisa's Spot says:

    uhmm….daily hehe, it’s easier to see the lemonade in the glass afterwards and be in awe that somehow it is there! maybe that is the joy under it all?

  2. WOW! I think everyone hopes the credit/debit card fraud will never happen to them. I am so glad it is going to be resolved without you having to make the amends. Sending healing thoughts for Barry. Glad Kiah is home as support..

  3. jeff v says:

    A little unsettling to say the least . I know because a while back someone “skimmed ” my ATM card and info and had a nice spree in Chicago. I didn’t lose anything except a little bit of my sense of security and faith in my fellow man. Oh well. It ‘s one of those things that you hear ab out but never expect to happen to you. good luck with Barry’s surgery and enjoy your visit with your daughter!

  4. Colleen says:

    Kathy, appreciating your recipe for lemonade and your willingness to share it.
    And liking what Eliza says, about the joy under it all……

    Welcome home Kiah and heal well Barry 🙂

  5. Susan D says:

    Oh goodness, what a day! I’m so sorry for the initial heart-pumping and angst. Really understand that. So glad things worked out with the credit card. I’m sorry that your trip downstate will be delayed/put on hold … I know that you and Kiah are eager to get down there. I’m glad that your bebs is here! Hoping that the lemons had their fun for a bit and realize that making too much lemonade can get just plain frustrating when it’s a deluge. Sending love and wishes for a peaceful day.

  6. Carol says:

    The Kat and I had one of those days recently. Went to town, van started making strange, scary noises, drove ever-so-cautiously to mechanic I happened to know about, wheel bearing assembly disintegrated, they gave us car to use, fixed problem, we saw The Help and loved it – and the part did it’s “I’m going to fall apart now” in town, not on a mountain road in the middle of a forest. It also made 3 things (well pump, lawn tractor) that had fallen apart in the past couple of weeks, so it’s got to be all uphill now!

  7. That’s one reason credit cards are sometimes better than debit cards…. if someone had been using your debit card, the money would have been GONE from your bank account! I’m glad it got sorted out quickly and easily. Sending you some good vibes now so that everything else goes smoothly!! 🙂

  8. sonali says:

    Oh the credit card episode is sad! its disgusting to hear about such frauds happening around, how terrible! Its great you didn’t have to struggle much running behind the credit card company guys!

    Well, the delicious lemonade part – nice to hear that your daughter is back home, enjoy the time together and ‘Hi’ to her :). I’m sure Barry will be alright soon, the surgery will go well.

  9. Fountainpen says:

    Hey, my credit card was used for toy train parts from
    a Connecticut store…..name, I think the store was THE BRASS CABBOOSE
    call came from Taiwan or somewhere in China…..charge: $2100.00……..

    Well, it all as straigthened out eventually….the store
    was adamant about the fact that ALL numbers even the little ones
    on the back were correctly given……….

    so….AND…..my credit card was in my possession at all times…
    go figure!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Brenda Hardie says:

    Oh no! A day or more of lemons is not easy to take…I’m sorry you had to endure all of that..the credit card filching (love that word!), Barry’s knee diagnosis, Kiah being late on the plane…that’s enough to make a person rant and rave! But not you! You discover a sweet young woman to assist you in the credit card fiasco and learn the news you were hoping for…you and Barry discover the cause of his painful knee and the solution to it…and while you and Barry end up waiting for a late plane, you enjoy the gift of a meal and a movie while waiting…more together time! And now, your daughter is home and all is right with the world 🙂 Enjoy your time with her! I’m sending up prayers for a lovely visit, for the surgeon to do his job with precision so that Barry gets relief, and that the credit card company stays true to their word (at least the words of the sweet young woman you spoke to) and that your plans to go downstate still come to be.
    Give Barry and Kiah a big squeeze and just bask in their company…savor every drop of that lemonade!

  11. Sybil says:

    I’ve heard that if you’re going to travel abroad it’s a good idea to let your Credit Card/Bank know. Knew someone who travelled to Bali and had their card refused as the bank was trying to prevent fraud. 🙂 Some days it just doesn’t pay to get out of bed. Glad card, hubbie and daughter are all OK.

  12. holessence says:

    Kathy – I’m so glad your credit card company work WITH you — sometimes you hear it go the other way. Sounds like they were very customer focused.

    Please know that I’m sure thinking about you and yours.

  13. Dawn says:

    Glad your daughter arrived safely, glad husband’s knee is fixable, and glad the credit card company was on their toes!

  14. Kathy says:

    Thank you all for your reading, your sympathy, your own ability to make lemonade from lemons! Guess what? We already got our credit card bill and all the excess charges have already been removed. Unfortunately the new credit card isn’t here yet and Kiah and I are leaving for downstate to visit my parents and brothers and family in a couple of hours. However, I do have a second credit card, and hey, if that won’t work~~Kiah can pay for the trip with hers. LOL!

  15. You can bet on one thing, some people in Texas had a good time while it lasted. 🙂 Now, you go and enjoy yourself. Oh, if you send my your credit card information, I’ll keep it safe for you. 😉

  16. Robin says:

    I’m so glad the credit card company caught on to what was happening. I’m also glad your daughter arrived safely and that Barry’s knee will be repaired, and that you managed to make all of that lemonade. 😀

  17. Oh, that is just awful!! I swear it was NOT me who used yur credit card!! 😉
    I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with this mess, but thank goodness the credit card company realized what was going on. I prefer to pay with cash, and don’t use the credit card unless I have to… and up until recently didn’t even have an ATM card, because I hate them! You just never know what can happen. Hubby actually found a “skimmer” attached to an ATM machine a couple of years ago (AT THE BANK!!!!). He peeled it off and we tool it home with us, and turned it in the next day when the bank opened again. That was a close call!

  18. Karma says:

    Yikes! Scary stuff… but wonderful it was caught before anything worse happened.

  19. Kathy says:

    Barry said our credit card was delivered via UPS on Thursday, just a few hours after we left. It really was a positive experience. It’s weird how quickly you can forget that something like this actually happened. So much has happened since last Tuesday that I had completely FORGOTTEN that this occurred. (That is not unusual. I usually forget really quickly and it’s on to the next adventure…)

  20. “Skimming” seems the latest id theft activity. It is a pain because the criminal can scan your credit card even if it’s inside your purse, just by walking by and you never knew what hit you. We used to only use our debit cards. Now we use our credit card and just transfer the money from checking to pay it off once a week. We also ordered anti-skimming sleeves for all of our cards. Bother!

  21. Kathy says:

    I never really realized what “skimming” was until now. I have a debit card but it has a small limit, so if anyone stole it they could only take a minimal amount and it would be discovered quickly. Thank you for sharing about it, dancingantelope.

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