I figured I’d interrupt my regularly scheduled posts for this one. The one slated for tomorrow will still be posted on time.
Those in the US have been hearing about how the government will ‘shutdown’ if a budget isn’t agreed upon. Now today that shutdown happened.
On the upside in a last minute bill the active duty military will still be paid. On the downside things are still being ‘slimmed down’ as the media is calling it.
I wanted to share what happened this morning when it went into effect; from an active duty spouse’s POV.
25 people were standing outside my commissary this morning at 8:30am for the ‘early bird’ access. Why? Government shutdown. Stateside commissaries will be open today in an attempt to sale off their perishables but will then start to systematically shutdown.
Commissaries are where most military buy their goods since it’s cheaper than other stores in general; yes including wally world. The US miliary does not get paid a lot folks. But that’s a rant for another day.
I had already planned to go today with a friend to teach her how to do extreme couponing. We just happened to have bad luck on the day we picked. When we got there we encountered a line just to get in.
The personnel said they didn’t know when their doors would close. By the time 9:20am rolled around (20mins after it officially opened) there was a 10 minute line to get to a cashier.
By the time 1pm rolled around, and I drove past it, the parking lot was full and people had resorted to parking along an adjoining street. A lady at the MWR Arts and Craft Center said it took her 30 minutes to go through the line and that there was no beef or pork left.
My friend and I had to call the CYS to see if our kids would have gymnastics today. According to them as of yesterday morning no, but as of last night yes; until further notice.
These are just the things that have affected me personally.
I have a friend who’s husband hasn’t been able to apply for contract jobs because the funds are pending. My husband has friends who are current contractors and didn’t know their status until this morning. I still have no idea if my son’s therapy appointment will be honored if this continues. Does the mental heath clinic count as essential personnel? My friend had to call to verify her appointment concerning wrongful billing by a medical facility.
If you think it’s just the military that’s effected don’t be fooled. People are being turned away from state and government jobs all over the country. Will they get retroactive pay? Maybe. Then again, maybe not.
While the media is calling this a ‘slimdown’ the fact remains that once it effects you or a loved one it’ll feel very much like a negative thing. No spin can convince you that the two day drive you took to your favorite national park only to find it closed was merely a ‘slimdown’. If you’re one of the unlucky to have to go home today and not get paid, a cheerful turn of phrase isn’t going to stop your worrying about if you have enough money to pay bills this month.
The truly sad part? This whole thing could have been avoided if our government was more willing to compromise. You know that thing where neither party gets everything they want but still gets a bit of something?
Have you been some of the unlucky today that got effected by the slimdown?