I got a credit collection call today asking for “Jane”. When YA was younger and still needed daycare and after-school care, I rented out a room in my house to cover the costs. Over the years I had a variety of housemates, some great experiences (still friends with Fredrick) and some sad (Dawn passed away a year after she lived here) and some just downright weird.
My first suspicion that Jane was a little on the weird side was the day she moved in. We had agreed on the day; I had told her I would be home about 5. When I arrived home, her car was parked in the driveway and she was asleep in the front seat. I knocked on the window, she rolled down the window, said she’s be in shortly. Then she went back to sleep and didn’t come in until 2 hours later.
She wanted to set up a weekly house meeting which I resisted; that’s too formal for my taste. Our dog, Katy Scarlet, didn’t like her. She was estranged from her adult daughter but wouldn’t tell me why. She never got a job, although she talked about looking quite a bit. When she’d been living at the house for about 5 months, she told me she would have to travel to Colorado for something and due to a previous legal problem, she might be arrested and have to spend a couple of months there. She never went to Colorado. Then at the 6-month mark, massive numbers of forwarded pieces of mail started showing up for her. One day I counted 44 of them and this went on for about 3 weeks. She never explained. Did I mention the dog didn’t like her?
At the 9-month mark, she made coffee in her little coffee pot and then left about an inch of coffee in the pot for days on end, never cleaning it. I asked her about it a few times and she always said “Oh, sorry, I’ll get to it today” but never did. When the coffee had completely dried up, she moved the pot to the top of the refrigerator. At this point I told her that things weren’t working out and that she’s need to find another place. She didn’t argue. The day she moved out, I took the ratty coffee pot and set it on top of one of her boxes. She moved it to the counter. I carried it out and put it in her car. After that day I never saw her again or even heard from her.
The credit collection calls began about 6 months after she moved out. These calls came from Colorado, Arizona, California and also here in Minnesota. And the callers asked for her under a variety of names, although they were all a variation on “Jane”. They did slow down and then trickle off but over the years I’ve probably gotten 50 of these calls. Today’s call was almost exactly 22 years since she moved out.
Tell me about a “colorful” housemate/roommate that you’ve had.