Banking in Paradise

We seem to be spending a lot of time at banks this week. As the dollar has risen in value here, even while the American economy is in shambles, we’ve been taking care of money matters so that our future will look a little more solid.

The interest rates on time deposits here has continued to rise recently, after having gone down in the previous year. We did a survey of the banks in Singaraja and eventually settled on a rate almost 3% higher than the deposit account we made three months ago.

While we were doing that, we decided to open education savings accounts for all the kids. They all have accounts in the States, but their value has crashed over the last month. It was an interesting process and was done in a relatively short period of time.

BNI (Bank Nasional Indonesia) in Singaraja has moved to a new building; today was the first time that I was there. It’s very modern and quite efficient. Now that we have several accounts there, we receive a warm greeting from everyone. It’s nice to know that somebody appreciates our money.

So all the children now have accounts that they can access when they go to college. Mercedes is only a few years away so there won’t be much money in her account, but I hope that her US account will regain some value by then. Meredith, the youngest, will have a decent amount of money in her account by the time she reaches college age, and I hope that will go a long way towards paying for her education.

Of course, all this flurry of banking activity is because it appears that I am going back to Sumbawa to work again. I was asked to return for seven months until a new hire can come and replace me. So we will have a little cash infusion for our retirement fund, and considering my age now, I decided that the children needed some funds here in Bali, so that when the inevitable happens and I am no longer here, they will have some education money until their US funds get sorted out.

I would never have thought that I would spend so much time in banks as I have in the past week. Not exactly my idea of life in paradise, but then we make things up as we go sometimes.


~ by drbrucepk on October 24, 2008.

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