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Today's quote:

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

If you want breakfast in bed, sleep in the Possum Penthouse

 

It's been a ghastly night with strong and ice-cold winds. I've just been outside to survey the damage - luckily just a few fallen branches - and to give the resident possum his breakfast. Now I'm back indoors, close to the stove and even closer to the laptop.

I've almost finished my tax return and still owe the taxman several thousand dollars. As they say, nothing is certain but death and taxes. And yet, I'm surrounded by people who not only pay no taxes but draw heavily on welfare, be it the dole or our equally generous age pension:

Ag Pension rates

Pension rates per fortnight Single Couple each Couple combined Couple each
separated due to ill health
Maximum basic rate $794.80 $599.10 $1,198.20 $794.80
Maximum Pension Supplement $65.00 $49.00 $98.00 $65.00
Energy Supplement $14.10 $10.60 $21.20 $14.10
TOTAL $873.90 $658.70 $1,317.40 $873.90
ANNUALLY $22,721.40 $17,126.20 $34,252.40 $22,721.40
Source Australian Department of Human Services

Where did I go wrong? Why did I become a self-funded retiree? Should I have done what they've done and pissed it all up against the wall?

Anyway, there was some good news amongst all the gloom: a letter from the 'Deutsche Rentenversicherung' in Berlin informing me that my German pension has gone from a monthly €88.43 to €92.18, provided I can furnish them with a 'Lebensbescheinigung' countersigned by a local court official to confirm that I still have a pulse.

As soon as it has stopped racing (my pulse, Scots boy! ☺), I drive into the Bay to get it certified.