Monday, July 28, 2008

Rules of Being an Adult

Rule Number One: Try to always plan ahead.
Rule Number Two: If you don't plan ahead, don't rush. You'll make careless mistakes.
Rule Number Three: If you've made careless mistakes because you rushed because you didn't plan ahead, don't freak out.
Rule Number Four: If you're freaking out because you've made careless mistakes because you rushed because you didn't plan ahead, tell someone you're close to immediately so there's someone rational trying to keep you calm by telling you things will work out.
Rule Number Five: Once things work out, remember to thank said person for trying to keep you calm.
Rule Number Six: Start back at the beginning of the Rules of Being an Adult.

Sometimes life is kind of a "lather, rinse, repeat" phenomenom.

In preparation for Bruce and my upcoming move, I broke Rule Number One - I put off calling the utilities companies to transfer everything until this past weekend, only six days before we're scheduled to move. Georgia Power was first on my list - that went off without a hitch. The power will be turned on in the new apartment August 1st and off in the old apartment August 5th. But that was chartered territory. I already had an account with them. Then came unchartered territory. The next name on my list was natural gas for my hot water heater. I called Catalyst, the company listed on the welcome sheet, but heard an automated recording that their office was closed for the weekend. So I looked them up online but realized I knew nothing about natural gas or what kind of plan to go with (fixed? variable? 6 month? 12 month?). I listened to a tutorial and took a quiz and it was determined that I should get a 12 month fixed. But I started to wonder if the apartment complex had a recommendation. So I went to their website and found a link to "set up utilities." So I clicked on the link to an outside "set up all your utilities at once" online service and before I knew it I was applying for a 12 month fixed rate natural gas plan. But what I didn't realize was that I had broken Rule Number Two - I had rushed and subsequently made a careless mistake. It wasn't until after I recieved the confirmation e-mail saying that I would be notified when my application had been accepted that I realized I had applied for a natural gas plan through Georgia Natural Gas - NOT Catalyst. Well, there goes any chance of following Rule Number Three. I started to freak out. Bruce told me that it would probably be fine, that if I accessed the link to Georgia Natural Gas through the Arbor Hills website, then it must be a good option. He encouraged me to continue on my quest to transfer utilities.

Okay ... onto Comcast. Comcast went without a hitch with the exception of the fact that I had broken Rule Number One, waited too long and now can't get my cable and internet hooked up again until August 11th, ten days after we move. Jump to Rule Number Three - don't freak out Sarah, you can always go to Emory to get online.

Jump to Sunday morning. A friend of mine (who moved to Arbor Hills last month) told me that he had set up his utilities through the Arbor Hills website and was using Georgia Natural Gas. I started to feel better. I talked to a friend about borrowing his truck so I don't have to deal with renting one, so now all that's left is renter's insurance. Simple enough.

Now take a leap to Monday morning. I still haven't recieved an e-mail from Georgia Natural Gas saying my order was received. I called customer service only to find out that there was no record of my order. I explained to them that I had gone through an online program and the customer service rep told me he had never heard of that. So I called the online program and the first man I talked to told me there was no record of my order and started to process another order from scratch (do they work on commission because I think I was about to be scammed?!). At that point Rule Number Three was blasted out my office because I started to freak out. There was an order somewhere in cyper-space and I knew it was there because I had gotten a confirmation e-mail, but no one could tell me the status of my order or if it had even gone through!! What was I supposed to do? Start from scratch and risk ordering another 12-month plan with a $50 early termination fee and having to spend the money if my order did, in fact go through, or wait and see and risk not having hot water when I move into my new apartment, which will hinder my plans of washing all of my dishes that had to deal with my gross kitchen in my current apartment?

Lucky for me, I finally got to a rule I didn't break. I told someone. I less-than calmly explained what was going on to my mom on Yahoo messenger and then texted Bruce in a panic and told him we weren't going to have hot water. They both told me to calm down and that things would work out. I realized at this point that Rule Number Four (tell someone) coincides well with Rule Number Two (don't rush) - once I was talking to them I was forced to slow down. I did my research, found my account number for the application I submitted on Saturday, called the online utilities place again and the customer service woman I talked to finally found my order. Unfortunately - she said that because it was being processed through Georgia Natural Gas there was nothing I could do but wait until they comfirmed it, because at that point I couldn't cancel the order.

I should have started following the rules at number one.

In the end, it all worked out. Georgia Natural Gas finally confirmed my order and I should hopefully have hot water when we move on Friday. We apparently don't need to be there to get it hooked up because the hookups are already there.

Okay ... now I'm onto Rule Number Five. Bruce and Mom - THANK YOU for keeping me calm while I was having a minor utility-transfering meltdown. Some days I'm better at being an adult than others.

I'm going to try to follow ALL of the rules next time ...

With Grace,

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