A mixed Bag!

It has been a week of small instances, some annoying some uplifting, but nothing of significance.

It started with the Mayordomo, stopping me on my morning walk, to say that the timber was ready for collection, it had been delayed due to a few days non stop rain, which wasn’t a problem, as I was only going to put it into storage, so later that day, I arrived with the trailer, ( minus lights, but as he only lived a couple of hundred metres away, I wasn’t bothered) and loaded up, with his help, and his son’s, it made life a lot easier.

I then took it home, and using some spacers I had cut earlier in the day, I stacked it outside the workshop, where it will stay until it dries out.

I had him cut the timber into 2m lengths 4″x4″, an ideal size for any project I am likely to have in the future.

Nala is living up to her reputation, we all had to go out the other day, on our return Marcela found Pepe’s leg support

minus all the velcro tabs, Nala had jumped up, helped herself, chewed off all the tabs, and left her tooth marks all over the support. We were not best pleased, Pepe was grounded until Marcela could sew on new tabs, fortunately I had a roll of velcro.

To look at her, you wouldn’t think butter would melt in her mouth!

However she is proving herself to be worth her weight in gold, she hears the smallest sound, and is asking to go out and checks the perimeter of our fenced garden. That was probably our best investment, along with the topped razor wire, a number of Fincas within walking distance have now been burgled recently, and even though Marcela has now spoken to the local Commandant (Policia Marinilla), there has been no Policing presence at all in the area.

Also yesterday, a lone woman was accosted by a strange youth in the road, as she was driving by. As she didn’t immediately stop, he threw a stone at the car, when she stopped to take a photo, he ran at the car, throwing more stones, that’s the nice thing about walking with Nala, others keep a respectful distance when they pass us, and if they don’t, Nala lunges, which I had tried to stop, but now…

I still haven’t got the trailer lights sorted

with the constant rain, there was no way I was lying on the ground, it will get done, when time and weather allows.

My main gripe this week has been Bancolombia, I have been with them since I arrived in the Country over eleven years ago, starting last year I had been asked to complete a Form to comply with FATCA and CRS, which mainly relates to US Citizens, you have to declare if you pay taxes in another country, they state they do this on behalf of DIAN, the Colombian Tax Authority.

No problem, until I received another in February, which I again completed, and then last week, I had reason to go onto my online account, where I found that Bancolombia had been taking a Tax payment called ‘Rentencion en la Fuente’ on behalf of DIAN, it was only a couple of Pesos a time, but over the year it will add up. Marcela rang Bancolombia on my behalf, and they told her that it was nothing to do with them DIAN was taking it. She rang DIAN, who checked my records, and stated that I was fully compliant, there was no reason for any such payment, and anyway, they don’t have access to my account, so only Bancolombia could be responsible. After again talking to the Bancolombia Call-Centre and getting nowhere, the following day, we paid the local Branch a visit.

The Assessor, was helpfulness itself, but even after seeking advice elsewhere, she couldn’t establish why the sums were being taken, and she sent off an information request to HQ, which I was informed that I would receive a reply within 8 days.

The following day, I received a reply by email, informing me that the payments were being taken because I was registered as a US Citizen, and if I wanted more information, to go to a Branch, which is exactly what we did.

I received loads of apologies, they tried to tell me that it was the Branch I signed up with 11 years ago, but we all knew that was a load of rubbish, I signed up with my UK passport, and have been receiving monthly pension payments from the UK ever since, anyway, I was told, that it had now been rectified, and no more payments would be taken from my account, no suggestion that I would receive a refund! but for the value involved, I wasn’t going to push it.

Blow me if two days later, another payment wasn’t taken, I am hoping it’s just taking a day or two for the information to filter through, but if not, I will be back down at the Branch, and not quite so polite this time.

Yesterday, I had an appointment with the Pain Specialist, my right hip, and knee are playing ball for the time being, they are not pain free, but it’s certainly bearable, and not stopping me getting on with life. Unfortunately the same can’t be said for the left side, my hip has started giving me pain, if I try to lie on my left side at night, I can’t do it for more than ten minutes, however my left knee is the main problem now, and totally different pain to that I had in the right, so the Specialist referred me back to my Orthopaedic Specialist, and got me an appointment for Tuesday morning, that is fast in anyone’s book, so we’ll have to see what he says.

Published by Phil Sale

I moved to Colombia from Spain in 2012, and I am happily married to a Colombiana.

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