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Crazy Hockey Weekend, Part II

April 12, 2010

After the first game on Saturday, we had about a 2 hour window before Erin needed to be back to dress for the second game. My in-laws had gone to Hamburg to see her play, so we went with them to a Pub style restaurant right on Lake Erie. As we were driving along Rte. 5 looking for a place to eat, we passed a beach with a launch point for sailboarding. Although we didn’t see anyone with sailboards, we did see several kite surfers. I had never seen this before and only figured out what to call it when I searched in Google. Pretty cool sport! I, unfortunately, did not get any pictures of them as we were short on time and my photographic needs were overridden by everyone else’s gastronomic needs…

I did however, take a moment in the parking lot at the restaurant to photograph a small wind farm that has risen out of the rubble that was once Bethlehem Steel in Lackawanna. I remember trips to Buffalo as young child and seeing Bethlehem Steel in full swing. It seems like another lifetime ago. When we lived in Buffalo, Jeff and I used to takes rides over the skyway and into the southtowns along Rte. 5, observing all the dilapidated buildings and boats along the lake shore.   As I stood looking at the wind farm, rising out of a seemingly dead, unusable chunk of land, I couldn’t resist but take some pictures! I am fascinated by the giants that convert a wild, unstoppable force into usable energy. Jeff laughs whenever I get excited about wind turbines. The other night, when I eagerly showed him my pictures, he asked if I was turning into Don Quixote… I have no intention to attack, I only like to look at them!

In addition to the wind turbines, my favorite Buffalo building is in this picture. See City Hall framed between the two generators on the left? The not-so-cool to look at building that stands above the rest is HSBC Centre.

One more picture of the Buffalo skyline. The Peace Bridge to Canada is visible in this one. During my final year at Buff. State and my first year of teaching, before we moved back to Rach-cha-cha, we lived a stone’s throw from the Peace Bridge…and therfore, Doug and Tom Reid Sports in Fort Erie, Ontario! Much time, and money, was spent there when Jeff was playing hockey. They are truly great people!

After a tasty meal, it was back to the ice arena for another game. This time against Niagara.

There was definitely some unrestrained excitement at winning their second game of the tournament. This game was the closest of the 4 games they played.

After the game we headed towards home. I was navigating while Jeff drove, but he turned the wrong direction out of the rink before I had a chance to tell him which way to turn. Knowing my way around the area pretty well, I told him we’d just take a slightly different route. Soon we came upon a HUGE Wal-Mart and Erin asked if we could stop. We went in and grabbed a couple little things and Jeff took the girls to the checkout while I went to sit in the Jeep. My back was not happy after all the standing and/or sitting on hard benches. I got situated when Jeff appeared at the door alone asking for his debit card back. We had stopped, in Rochester, to buy ice to fill the cooler some 7 hours earlier and I was sure I had given him back his debit card. Apparently I hadn’t.

After figuring out that I had most likely thrown out the debit card, with the empty ice bag, at the Wilson Farms, I made several phone calls trying to figure out what, exactly, to do. I didn’t want to cancel the card if I had only left it at the counter by mistake, but the receipt from the store only had an 800 number, not a local one. When I called 411 they gave me the number for Griffith Oil…not sure how that happened! They are located near each other physically, but have completely different names, so I am not sure how one number was mistakenly given for the other (still scratching my head on that one). Once I found the correct number (another call to 411) no one would answer the phone at the store. Not terribly shocking, since the people who work there are frequently out back smoking pot during their shifts! The only reason I know this is becuase it is the closest “stop-and-rob” to our house, so we go there when we need something and are in a hurry. After 20 minutes of calling and letting the phone ring 20 times each, hanging up, calling back, etc. someone finally answered the phone. After spelling our last name about 6 times for the girl and listening as she yelled into the phone to her co-workers, she concluded that the card wasn’t there. In hindsight, I wonder why I called in the first place. I KNOW what the people who work at this store are like and that even if the card was there, they probably would have concluded that it wasn’t. I must stop here and say that I have nothing against people who work at Wilson Farms, it’s just that this particular store, for whatever reason, has very shady characters working at it.

Upon finishing with the Wilson Farms people, I had to call HSBC to cancel the card. Sounds simple, right? WRONG! I called the 800 number on the back of a different HSBC card that states to “call if card is lost or stolen.” Kind of funny if you think about it…how would you get the number if you lost the card? Anyway, I called and got an automated system asking for an account number. I entered the appropriate number, only to have to pass through a handful of other “push a button for…” prompts resulting in my having to hang up because there was no option for “press…for a person.” I dutifully dialed again (oh yeah, the phone number ends HSBC and my cell phone is designed for those who text, so it doesn’t have the letters associated with the numbers…grrr)! I waited until the prompting was finished and eventually I was transferred to India a hold queue for a customer service rep. Twenty minutes later, a woman with a thick Indian accent answered. I have trouble with Indian accents; for some reason I just can’t understand them very easily. Add that to the noise from being on the thruway, and I couldn’t understand a word she said. Eventually, after she repeated everything 5 times, I found that in order to get a new card issued, I needed to tell her where we opened the account (specific branch name) or the last cash withdrawal made with the card (again, specific location), We almost never withdraw cash, and it is usually Jeff that does whenever we do and he doesn’t pay attention to things like the name of the bank whose ATM he is using. After telling her every unique piece of information I could think of, I wound up hanging up without getting a new card issued. I did go to a branch today, spent 5 minutes with a CSR and was issued two cards, one in each of our names, without having to pull any crazy information that was long ago forgotten from my poor, sad, over-tired brain. They should be here in a week, whew!

The obvious moral to this story is: Don’t throw away your debit card!

Once I was finished making all the crazy phone calls, we were nearly home. Once we got home, Jeff and I had to go back out and play musical money, moving cash from one account to another, so we could still access money without his ATM card. I often wonder why we maintain more than one checking account…now I know!  By the time Jeff and I got back home, I was wild. When I get really tired, I become extremely agiatated and unreasonable. I just wanted my bed! Kyle left hamburg with Jeff’s parents so they could take him to a race on Sunday morning, so we had one less person to drag out of bed and to Hamburg Sunday morning. When I finally fell asleep, I didn’t move until Sunday morning when the alarm went off. Poor Jeff was so out of it, he tried to wake me up when his alarm went off, not realizing I was already up and showered… Good thing Sunday was a much shorter day…more about that tomorrow.

One comment

  1. What a miserable thing to have happen…losing one of the plastic cards is such a stressful ordeal!

    Well, looks like everyone had a good time in spite of the crud!!!We’ve been without our debit cards twice….both times when someone hacked and got card numbers…



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