Hotels near coastal credit union amphitheatre
Searching For the Best Progreso Beach Homes in Mexico.
2023.05.30 12:04 yucatanbeachhomes123 Searching For the Best Progreso Beach Homes in Mexico.
Are you exploring Progreso Beach Homes
? Don't Worry, Since Progreso is a beach town, it seems sensible to start there. However, beaches can be difficult to access due to possible construction near hotels and homes. Spend a day at the beach in Progreso to escape the city's attractions. This is a wonderful choice if you're staying at a coastal property, Reach out to Yucatan Beach Homes and visit the website to learn more.
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2023.05.30 07:11 KC847 Which card to pair with Chase Sapphire Preferred for someone that doesn't travel often?
I have the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and I'm not seeing much of a benefit in terms of rewards. I use it for nearly all of my purchases. I don't travel very often right now, but may travel more in the future (not in the very near future but in the distant future after I save up some money) so I don't want to rule out the possibility that I may use points for flights and hotels in the future.
Most of my purchases are in groceries, dining/takeout, gas, retail shopping (in store and online), health and wellness, and other bills. I sometimes spend money on entertainment (mostly streaming services, music) but am trying to save money right now so haven't made a lot of purchases.
Which card(s) would be best to get to maximize my rewards or cash back?
-Excellent credit score (770-780)
-Have not applied for any cards for over 3 years
-Annual income: ~$130k
-Have an Amazon prime membership, but only order from Amazon occasionally (don't go there for regular day to day purchases)
-I have 2 other credit cards that I never use:
(1) Chase Southwest (I have no clue why I have this card; I opened it many years ago for a promo offer when I needed points for a trip) and(2) Barclay Ring card - terrible card. No rewards. I opened it several years ago just for the balance transfer of 0% APR when I was trying to pay off my credit card debt over a period of time without incurring interest.
I am not loyal to Chase and am open to other banks. My checking account is at Chase, which is why I started there with credit cards.
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2023.05.30 06:34 MonstersOnTheHill I am late 30s, live outside NYC, and have a HHI of $400k+. I work full time, have two kids, and am a grad student
I'm a day late posting this -- I'm sorry to have gotten off schedule! I realize there have been a lot of high-earner diaries recently, but I hope my perspective is still of interest.
Section One: Assets and Debt
Retirement Balance: $460K (mine) and $250K (husband’s). We both max out our annual withholdings. I’ve been working longer than him, and my employer offers a more generous match, which contributed significantly to my balance.
Equity: $275K. Our home is currently worth about $450K. We live in a M-HCOL area (far) outside of NYC, and our home was a fixer upper when we bought it. Honestly, it’s still a fixer, and we are saving towards a major renovation.
Cars: Maybe $15-$20k total…we drive two paid off cars. One is 13 years old, and the other is 10 years old.
Other Cash and Investments: $150K
Credit card debt: None, paid every month
Student loan debt (for what degree): $80K towards the grad degree I’m pursuing now. Since we’re saving towards the home reno, I’m financing my degree rather than paying for it outright. I know this is counterintuitive given the interest rate environment. However, the home reno has been a priority for us since we bought this home.
Daughters’ 529s: $75K
Total Net Worth: $1.145M
Section Two: Income
Income Progression: I've been working in my field for 13 years and my starting salary was $40,000.
I work as a Director of Financial Planning & Analysis in a niche field. I won’t go into too many details because it’s a small world. My salary progression was as follows:
Year 1: $40,000 starting, right after recession. I had an amazing boss who mentored me and recognized my potential. After six months, I received a promotion and raise to $60,000.
Year 3: Promotion and raise to $90,000, for a role with more financial and analytical responsibility. Although I worked hard, I continued to benefit from having a boss who advocated for me. I consider this a major turning point.
Year 8: Raise to $120,000 for additional responsibilities after a coworker retired.
Year 10: Raise to $135,000
I’ve received an average of 2.5% COLA increases and now earn $145K. My boss has requested a $10,000 bonus for me this year, which I haven’t yet included because it’s still under review.
My husband earns $260,000 base salary as a VP of a large corporation (this is a very recent raise…he was at $200K previously). In addition, he can receive a performance-based bonus of 20-30%. We don’t include his bonuses in our financial planning because they are not guaranteed and because a portion is RSUs. When he receives a cash bonus, we put it towards our daughter’s college accounts and/or our home reno fund.
Education: I have a bachelors and a masters in a field unrelated to my career. My tuition was paid by scholarships/assistantships. In addition, my parents covered my living expenses during undergrad. During my first graduate degree, I worked 3 part-time jobs to cover my non-tuition expenses. I’m now enrolled in a grad program more directly related to my career. My employer encouraged me to do this program and generously allows me the time out of office. In addition, if I stay for a certain number of years, they will reimburse a portion of my tuition.
Main Job Monthly Take Home:
Monthly take home: $6,300 after taxes, retirement ($1,875) and medical/dental benefits ($110– self only)
Husband’s monthly take home: $12,560 after taxes, retirement ($1,875), and medical/dental ($400 for him and our two kids)
Section Three: Expenses
Mortgage: $2,485 for principal, interest, insurance, and taxes. We refinanced to a 15-year loan at 2.3% when rates were low
Daycare: $3,510 per month (full-time for a toddler and preschooler)
Savings contribution: $3,000-$5,000
Daughters’ 529 accounts: $2,000 ($1,000 each)
Debt payments: $700 towards my student loans. This will increase once I’m done with my degree
Donations: $3,000 annually
Transit $350-400 for husband’s commute (3x/week to NYC)
Subscriptions: $59 for Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Duolingo, Apple Storage, and credit monitoring
Gym membership: $149 for Pure Barre
Husband’s physical therapy: $130 (portion not covered by insurance)
Car insurance: $3,200 annually. (This seems high, considering we have good records, don’t drive much, and both cars are paid off. I need to look into this)
Life Insurance: $3,100 annually
Day 1 (Saturday):
6:00 AM: Wake up. I’m doing a modular course for my graduate degree, and the class wraps up today. I study for the exam that happens this afternoon. A little after 7, I walk to a nearby coffee shop and buy a large Americano for $4.50 including tip. When I’m back at the hotel, I pack up my room and leave a $20 tip for housekeeping. On the way out, I drop my bags at the bell stand. The hotel cost is covered by tuition.
9:00: Meet with my study team to finalize a paper and presentation that’s due today. At noon, we break for lunch (also covered by tuition). I have a salad and lots of carbonated caffeine. After lunch, we have an hour-long final exam.
2:00: Final course wrap up. It’s been an intense week-long session. I learned a lot, but am so ready to head home. I walk back to the hotel to retrieve my bags. Along the way, I stop to buy an empanada ($8 including tip). Then I call an Uber to the airport ($55 including tip). While in the Uber, I talk to my husband and daughters, who are 1.5 and almost 4. Due to the time difference, it’s their bedtime and if I don’t catch them now, I’ll lose my chance. I promise them that I’ll be home when they wake up in the morning. A lot of my classmates went to dinner together before heading to the airport. On the one hand, I have FOMO because my classmates are awesome. But on the other hand, it was really important to me to talk to my family, and I know I couldn’t have done that easily in a bustling restaurant (I’ve tried, and it was a frustrating experience for everyone!).
6:00: Arrive at the airport. I check my bag ($35). Once I’m through security, I pick up some souvenirs. My hotel wasn’t in an area with good shopping options, and the class days were pretty packed anyway. I get locally made chocolate for my husband. The girls get a small stuffed animal each, and a book to share ($70 total). Then I treat myself to crab cakes and a French 75 to celebrate the end of the week ($60 including tip).
10:00: On the flight, I read until the cabin lights go out and then try to sleep. I used to be able to sleep better on red eyes, but I wake up every 15 minutes.
Day 1 Total: $252.50
Day 2 (Sunday):
6:00: Flight lands and I gather my bags and take the parking shuttle. Although I parked in an economy lot, the total was still $174. Ugh – this has been an expensive week.
7:45: Arrive home. The girls crawled into our bed and are snuggled up next to my husband. The toddler wakes up as I come into the room and the look on her face when she sees me is priceless. Our preschooler wakes up soon after. It’s so good to be reunited with my people! We all head downstairs and have breakfast (waffles and cereal, plus a huge pot of coffee). It’s cold and rainy today and we spend the morning watching TV together.
10:00: Our toddler falls asleep for her nap, and my husband encourages me to do the same. Our preschooler is happily entertaining herself with Legos and puzzles, so I doze for a couple hours. Around 1:00, we all have turkey sandwiches for lunch. Then, I take over kid duty so my husband can finally have some time to himself. He spends the afternoon woodworking in his basement workshop.
2:00: Our preschooler’s birthday is coming up. I buy digital invites from Etsy ($12) and send them to Staples to print ($16 with a promo). They are ready in about two hours and we pick them up. My preschooler asks for kinetic sand at Staples and I cave in and buy it for her ($11). I constantly complain about the amount of “stuff” in our house, but to be honest, I’m guilty of contributing to the clutter. When we get home, I spend the afternoon doing crafts with the girls.
5:15: We heat up some leftovers that my in-laws dropped off while I was gone. We do the girls’ bedtime routine a little early since everyone seems tired. Lights out by 8:00 for the girls. Then I catch up on work email and start making a list for the week. For the purposes of this money diary, my husband mentions that he spent $270 yesterday restocking groceries. Then I watch Succession and head to bed
Day 2 Total: $483
Day 3 (Monday):
5:08: My alarm goes off because I typically go to Pure Barre on Monday morning. I’m still jetlagged so I decide not to go today. I hadn’t actually signed up for a class because I had a feeling this would happen.
6:30: Everyone else is still asleep, so I go downstairs to make coffee and enjoy a few quiet moments to myself. When my husband and kids wake up, we all have breakfast (frozen waffles and berries for the kids. English muffins for the adults).
8:30: Drop the kids off at daycare and then get to work. I work primarily from home, so I just have to walk upstairs to my office nook. I spend the morning prepping for an important meeting tomorrow with senior leadership. I get a reminder on our phone that our toddler has a well-child visit today…usually I sync my calendars, but I totally neglected to log this on my work calendar, and it conflicts with a meeting with our chief of staff. CRAP. I debate canceling the doctor’s appointment, but decide to keep it. Our toddler is getting vaccines today and if I don’t keep the appointment, I’m not sure when I can reschedule. I apologize profusely to our COS and ask if we can reschedule. She says not to worry, and that she appreciates the extra time in her schedule…hopefully I didn’t make a bad judgment call.
1:15: I quickly eat a turkey sandwich for lunch and then pick up our toddler from daycare for her appointment. These well visits usually take 30 minutes and are covered by insurance. As luck would have it, we spend 90 minutes waiting because they are running behind. Luckily, I have snacks and activities in my purse to occupy her. To pass the time, I browse for favors and paper goods for our older daughter’s upcoming party. I end up buying paper goods, decor, and favors ($67 from Target) and iced sugar cookies ($240 from Etsy). As I type this, I realize how bananas it is to spend that much on decorated sugar cookies. Our incomes have increased pretty dramatically in the past few years, and although we haven’t increased our fixed expenses, we’ve definitely succumbed to lifestyle inflation for one-off things like this. It’s something I need to be aware of. I’m finally home around 3:30, just in time for my next call. My husband is WFH today and takes over kid duty during this call.
5:15: It’s time to pick up our older daughter from preschool, but my call is running long so my husband picks her up. For dinner, we make salads topped with roast chicken. The toddler loves salad, but our preschooler proclaims “I don’t like green leaves – I’m not a caterpillar!”. Well, okay then.
8:30: We do the girls’ bedtime routine, and then I continue prepping for tomorrow’s meeting. I wrap up around 1:00 am. While I’m working, husband preps two meals that just need to be reheated sometime later in the week. Good night!
Day 3 Total: $307
Day 4 (Tuesday):
7:30: Kids and I sleep in a bit this morning. My husband left home around 5:45 since he’s going into the office, so the three of us are on our own. For breakfast, the toddler has toast and berries. The preschooler has bran cereal and a frozen waffle. I eat their scraps, washed down with coffee.
9:15: I drop the kids off at daycare a little late this morning. Then I get working and practice the presentation I’m giving at 11:00
12:05: Call is over and I think it went as well as could be expected. I make myself a turkey sandwich for lunch. Then I go to the post office to mail a birth certificate request for our youngest daughter’s passport application. The cost for the birth certificate is $50. I also spend $15 at the post office to mail the envelope and buy stamps. Then it’s back to work.
5:10: Pick the girls up from school. My husband gets home around 6:45. Dinner tonight is a tofu and broccoli stir fry with rice. I don’t cook much, but I make this meal weekly and it’s everyone’s favorite. The secret is using soy sauce that is seasoned for seafood. It has a much deeper, richer flavor than standard soy sauce.
7:30: Bathtime and bed for the girls. I text with a mom from daycare whose kids are the same age as ours. We arrange a playdate for an upcoming weekend. She seems sweet and easygoing, and I’m hopeful that she and I will develop a friendship – making friends is hard when you’re an adult!
9:10: I debate doing schoolwork or “work work.” Schoolwork wins tonight…I spend about two hours prepping a case study.
Day 4 Total: $65
Day 5 (Wednesday):
5:30: Wake up and start working. I still have a lot of deliverables to catch up on. Husband leaves as usual to commute into the city.
7:00: I get an email and text message that daycare had to close today due to unforeseen circumstances. There was an issue with their plumbing that impacts the whole building. Oh no – I immediately feel a pit in my stomach. I really can’t afford this today, especially because I am out this Friday for another day of class. Although our preschooler is pretty independent, our toddler needs constant supervision. She’s always a moment away from jumping off a couch, climbing on a table, or otherwise causing herself bodily harm. My husband has multiple meetings with his division president today so he can’t realistically come home to help. Argh. I feed us all breakfast and prepare myself for a difficult day. I send my boss an email to let him know the situation, but promise to stay on top of my work after hours as needed. I also log a half day of PTO in the payroll system…I figure I can probably be about 50% productive today.
10:00: Our toddler falls asleep for a nap, so I frantically send out emails and run reports. Our preschooler watches shows on her tablet.
12:15: Toddler is up from her nap. Our poor preschooler has been on her tablet for too long and her eyes are glazed over. I decide to take the girls out for lunch to break up the day. We go to Jersey Mikes since it’s nearby and fast. The girls each have a kids meal and the toddler is delighted that it includes a kids cup. I have an Italian sub ($29). We eat outside and the preschooler hums and loudly proclaims "I love Jersey Mike's!"
1:30: We get back home and I jump on an internal call. Thankfully the girls are well behaved and don’t cause any disruptions, beyond waving hello at the start of the call.
3:00 I have another call and the girls are again on their best behavior. PTL. Maybe I’m just lucky, or maybe it’s that I bribed them with cookies.
4:45: I wrap up the workday a little early. I take the girls on a walk since the weather is nice. When we get back inside, they immediately melt down. The toddler wants to be held constantly, which is a challenge because she weighs 24 pounds. The preschooler is thrashing, spitting at me, and throwing toys. I resist a really strong urge to scream or cry or break something or hide in the bathroom – maybe all at once. Instead, I heat up one of the meals my husband made earlier this week. When our preschooler calms down, she asks if I still love her when she’s bad. She’s been asking this question a lot recently, and it makes me wonder if it’s just a phase, or if she needs more reassurance from us. Either way, it's heartbreaking to know she worries about this.
7:30: Husband had a late meeting, so he gets home later than normal. We do the girls bedtime and bathtime routines. We get another note from daycare saying that the plumbing issue is, unfortunately, still unresolved. We’ll get a tuition credit, but they will be closed another day. Husband and I talk through logistics. We agree that he’ll go into the city again tomorrow and I’ll handle the kids. His company is in the middle of a major reorg and it’s important for him to be there in person. We decide to ask his parents if they are available to help tomorrow. Between work, the kids, and my grad program, sometimes I feel like the only thing we talk about is logistics. It’s been at least 6 months since we’ve been on a date.
10:00: I catch up on work, and also prep for school this coming weekend. I go to bed a little after 1:00.
Day 5 Total: $29
Day 6 (Thursday):
5:45: Husband is up and out of the house at his normal time. I wake up and run some financial reports while I have the chance.
7:30: Kids are awake. While they eat breakfast I pack their activity bags and snacks since we’re going to my in-laws today. They are semi-retired and often help when we have childcare hiccups. They are truly a godsend. They live about an hour away and we arrive at their house a little after 10:00. On the way, I fill my car up with gas ($52).
12:30: The girls are having a blast with my in-laws. We take a break for lunch, which is chicken nuggets and hummus for the girls. I eat their scraps and also have some Greek yogurt.
4:15: I have a full afternoon of calls, but it goes smoothly thanks to the grandparents. We leave a few minutes after 5:00 and both girls fall asleep before we reach the first traffic light. This makes for a peaceful drive home. Traffic is heavy so we get home around 6:30. I open the mail, and find a surprise medical bill for $572. This is for the toddler’s trip to the ER…14 months ago! This is the first bill we are getting and honestly it had completely slipped my mind. She had a triple infection and ended up severely dehydrated. Seeing this bill dredges up all sorts of unpleasant memories. I’m grateful we have the means to pay this without issue, and I’m grateful she is healthy. I understand it's a privilege to pay a bill like this without thinking twice.
6:45: Husband arrives home. We reheat a pasta dish he made earlier this week and have a salad on the side. The girls are beat today, so we skip bathtime and let them go straight to bed. Thankfully, daycare can reopen tomorrow. I feel like a weight’s been lifted from my shoulders, especially since I have class tomorrow.
9:00: I have a call with my school study team to work on our group project. It lasts for about an hour.
10:30: Husband and I discuss buying a swing set for our backyard. He’s narrowed it down to two choices, and they’re both awesome: three swings, a rock wall, slide, and clubhouse area. I think they both look great, so I leave the final decision in his hands. The total with shipping and tax ends up being $1760. We considered buying a pre-assembled swing set to save time, but similar models cost nearly $6K. He’s handy, so he said he’d prefer to assemble it himself.
Day 6 Total: $2,384
Day 7 (Friday):
6:15: I have class today so I eat breakfast and get dressed early. I tend to wear a lot of athleisure when working from home. Today I put on a structured ponte dress and hastily apply Tarte makeup to give my skin some color. Every time I make the effort to get dressed, I'm reminded that I really do feel more confident when I look put together. I get to school around 9:00 for my first class.
12:00: Break in my schedule for lunch. I eat a salad and some kind of chicken dish, while catching up with classmates (covered by tuition). For dessert, I have a huge bowl of berries. Lots more coffee to keep me awake and engaged during class.
7:00: Classes are over for the day. I pay parking ($17) and am on my way. I get home at 8:30, in time to do bedtime with my girls. Husband made veggie quesadillas with black beans and guacamole, which I eat once the girls are asleep. I check my work email to make sure nothing is on fire. Then my husband and I watch an episode of “What We Do In the Shadows” and turn in for the night.
Day 7 Total: $17
Food + Drink: $371.50
Fun / Entertainment: $2,106
Home + Health: $572
Clothes + Beauty: $0
Weekly Total: $3,537.5
Reflections: Some of this week’s expenditures were unusual: the swing set, my travel expenses, and that old ER bill are not part of our normal recurring expenses. However, the rest of this week's spending was pretty typical. I realize a lot of this diary revolved around sorting out childcare disruptions…honestly, that takes so much mental and logistical energy on a weekly basis. Writing this diary also made me realize how little time my husband and I spend together. Often we feel like we’re in survival mode, but we need to be more intentional about prioritizing our relationship.
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2023.05.30 06:06 DWYL_LoveWhatYouDo Parking near Union Square: Is hotel valet parking necessary/advisable?
I've been to NYC a few times, but not to the area around Union Square or Irving Plaza, and not at all since, um, 2014? Maybe before that? Maybe it was 2006? It's been a while. I don't get out much.
I am driving to the city, will have a small amount of luggage and maybe a small cooler in my car. It's a long trip with more other stops planned on the way. I booked a hotel about 3 blocks away from Irving Plaza. I will either arrive in Union Square in the middle of the night to pay for 2 nights at the hotel or I'll get there mid-morning or late morning before Noon, then check-in sometime later or possibly even after the show. I haven't finalized this part yet. Partly depends on answers I get to my posts.
I hope you can help me with Parking Questions.
1) Should I find a spot on my own or is it best to use the hotel valet?
The woman at the hotel told me that I should use their valet parking rather than try to find a parking garage on my own. Problem is, I want to queue up at the theater for GA as soon as I can get there, but the hotel won't let me check into my hotel until after 3 PM. There's a chance, but no guarantee, of early check-in at 1 PM which is still later than I'm planning to get there. The time that I expect to get to town and the window for check-in are several hours apart, unless I book the hotel for the night before.
The hotel front desk person said that the local parking garages do not allow people to park for a full 24 hours. She said they may have rates for full day, but they will only allow parking for a time period that is under 24 hours as their definition of a full day stay. They aren't 24 hour access? Is this correct? Do they tow cars that haven't left or do they lock people out of the parking garages? Is that a thing? Should I listen to her or is she just trying to keep my business with the hotel?
Would you advise me to use the hotel valet parking?
Honestly, I'm not even sure I can do so before officially checking in, because their website still has the strict pandemic rules posted about not even being allowed in the building until check-in time. I will call to check on this, of course, but I want to know what you all say first.
If valet parking isn't the best possible solution or if I can't use it until 3 PM, would I be okay to search for a parking garage when I get there, with an expected stay of 24 to 30 hours?
Is my luggage likely to be safe in my car if I can't leave it at the hotel until I check-in, which might not happen until late evening, after the show?
2) Tipping? If I do use valet parking, what is the tipping expectation? I have never paid valet parking in my life, so that's a bucket list item I didn't know I needed to check off.
3) Parking apps: Are these useful, worthwhile, accurate? Should I download one? I don't live where anyone ever has to worry enough about finding parking to use an app, so this is a new thing to me.
Thanks very much, NYC!
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2023.05.30 05:26 Charming-Sky6989 Third and Fourth Card Recommendations!
- Current credit cards you are the primary account holder of:
- CSP - $30k Limit - Opened in 2018
- BoA Customized Cash Rewards - $20k Limit - Opened in 2012
- FICO Scores with source (see note on FICO score sources below):
- Oldest credit card account age with you as primary name on the account: 10 years
- Number of personal credit cards approved for in the past 6 months: 0
- Number of personal credit cards approved for in the past 12 months: 0
- Number of personal credit cards approved for in the past 24 months: 0
- Annual income $: $250k
MEMBERSHIPS & SUBSCRIPTIONS
- OK with category-specific cards?: Yes
- OK with rotating category cards?: No
- Estimate average monthly spend in the categories below. Only include what you can pay by credit card.
- Dining $: $600
- Groceries $: $800 (Most groceries are done at TJ and Safeway)
- Gas $: $200
- Travel $:
- Flights: $800
- Hotels: $600
- UbeLyft: $100
- Do you plan on using this card abroad for a significant length of time (study abroad, digital nomad, expat, extended travel)?: No
- Any other significant, regular credit card spend you didn't include above?: $1000 (Shopping, including Amazon)
- Can you pay rent by credit card? No
(delete lines that don't apply)
- Current member of Amazon Prime?: Yes
- Current member of Costco? Yes
- Current member of Chase, US Bank or any other big bank?: Chase and BoA
- Are you open to Business Cards?: No
- What's the purpose of your next card (choose ONE)?: SUB and Cashback
- Do you have any cards you've been looking at? Amex Blue Cash Preferred for Groceries, Chase Trifecta, Citi Premier
I have been living under a rock and finally catching up on how to best utilize credit cards. I'm looking to get at least 2 more in the near future and start building from there to maximize cashback and rewards. I will have a significant purchase in the near future ~$10k (In the next 2 months probably) so I would like to maximize the rewards. I also read that I could downgrade my CSP and then re-open it to get the SUB. Will I lose any of my UR points if I do that?
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2023.05.30 04:52 Sumif Our recent timeshare / HGV presentation experience.
A few weeks ago, my wife and I sat through a timeshare pitch and stayed at a 3-night hotel for like $170. Prior, I did research on the timeshare system, and some of the reading I did came from here, so I thought I’d share.
We stayed in Orlando, FL, and had a 10am appointment.
Due to some parking issues, we actually walked in at like 10:01am. There were a lot of people inside. It was a very diverse group of people two. We checked in, showed ID, and they showed us to the snacks and asked that we just wait for a moment. Then, these doors opened, and a dozen guys in suits all walked out and started finding their assigned couples. Our guy found us, made some small talk, and straight up said, “just know this is a low-pressure and laid back experience. Just enjoy your time, and if you like it, great, and if not, then no worries”.
We then went into a room with 7 other couples and watched a 25 minute presentation. It was well-done and triggered some emotions which was the point. There was some math that showed if you spent $150 per day, 14 days per year, paid a 15% sales tax, with inflation you’d spend like $90k in vacations over 25 years. I don’t know the inflation rate they used. My math at 3% showed much less, but the inflation for lodging may be higher.
Then, we went with our guy and he showed us the 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom demos. Obviously, all very nice units. At this point, it was about 11am.
Then, we went into a room with like 30+ tables and at each one was a salesperson and the prospects. It had a big built-in touch screen with Chrome or some other browser. He asked us some questions about our traveling plans and got more information. He was then like, “it doesn’t seem like you travel a lot, and if you do it seems kinda spontaneous. With kids and such, you seem to just take short trips for now. I’m not sure this program is the best fit for you”. So then he shows us this “last minute” booking thing, and I forget what it’s called. It pulls up stuff that’s available within 60 days. It had nothing to do with points, it was all cash prices. For example, he showed us that a 7-day stay near Disney was $309 for the week and it was a nice hotel. Then there was a hotel in Colorado with the same duration and price. He said that this is very popular because you can’t beat the prices. Of course, this is only available with a timeshare ownership. It actually seemed like a good deal if it weren’t for needing to purchase ownership.
We never felt any pressure at all until the very end. He showed us the last-minute bookings and would ask “is this something that looks good to you?” It’s the sales-y way of asking a question. He started asking these questions that obviously invoked a “yes”. “forget the price, would this help you achieve your dream vacation”? I knew this, working in sales, and once I sensed this, I said that we are not interested. Then, he turned to my wife and asked her a bit more point blank, “does this all sound good to you” and she just said “we aren’t interested at this time”. His whole demeanor changed, but he was still nice. But you can sense the shift from him being all likeable to him just making short comments and not acknowledging us. So he concluded the meeting and showed us to the post-presentation room, wished us well, and he was on his way.
Afterward, they asked us if he was professional, overall experience, etc. Then, the guy was like “well our last offer is this package for any 7-day stay at any of these locations for $1800, but you can open a AMEX, get interest-free for 12 months plus all these points. We declined, the guy was nice, and we were on our way.
Overall, it was fine. Only when he started asking those questions did we sense the pressure was starting to build, so we quickly shut it down. We were done in 1 hour and 45 minutes. Not purchase. No Credit card. Nothing at all. We showed ID, but at no point did we have to provide our SSN.
Honestly, I think it was worth the hassle of going to the presentation to get a good deal.
submitted by Sumif
to Hilton [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 03:02 EventfulLol Awful time to buy house, but is this a good deal?
Hi all, some background. Located in TX, LCOL area. My wife and I are 23 years old, I’m an accountant and she’s a first year teacher next semester. Both around 780 TransUnion credit score. Gross takehome is around 110k, no car notes or credit card debt, monthly spending/expenses between us is budgeted around $2700 without housing expense. Currently, we rent a duplex and rent + utilities is usually $1700. When we renewed our lease this month,our landlord put an option to purchase which pique’d our interest. We plan to stay in the area for the foreseeable future, and have been looking to buy, except mortgage rates are high and obviously housing prices are crazy. Landlord is looking to sell around 220k, and we can comfortably put 20k down before closing costs. Total sqft is 1400, the kicker is that the other side of the duplex is a studio, like 270sqft that she charges $1000 a month for, and she says there is always demand as we live near a hospital and nurses are constantly staying there. So essentially we would have our mortgage payment more than 50% covered by the other unit, which entices me even with shitty rates and high property values. Does this seem like a decent decision? Any comments appreciated, thank you
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to personalfinance [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 02:39 asahi2121 Family trip to Toronto for 1 week
Family of 5 people. We plan on riding the UP express from Pearson's to Union Station. We have 2 kids in our group who are 10 and 11 years old. I understand kids under 13 ride for free. What's the process? Do we show their passport to a station agent? Do we have to show their passport to an agent when we ride ( bus, train, subway)? TTC mentions a child proof of age card but it appears it's for residents.
Is it worth it to buy a presto card? We plan on visiting the major attractions and visiting neighborhoods like Chinatown, with the only real trip being Niagara Falls.
Is it worth visiting centre island?
Thoughts regarding one day car rental to Niagara Falls vs train? We'll have access to free parking in downtown Toronto but not sure how the parking situation will be in Niagara Falls. Is it easy? How much can we expect to spend on parking while at Niagara Falls?
Our return flight departs at 630am but UP express starts at 6am. What are our options if we're staying in downtown Toronto? Or should we stay at a hotel in or near the airport?
Recommendations for buffet?
I appreciate the feedback :-)
submitted by asahi2121
to askTO [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 02:12 jerseynegrita06 I am at my wit's end and I don't know what to do, please help!
This post might be triggering! Trigger warning! This is my first post here, please bear with me. I have been living with my bf for the past 6 years...he is 43 and I'm 38F. I always try to own my part in any situations that arise and I try to keep my friends & family out of my toxic relationship, so here I am hoping for some help. We have been having some issues recently, we have so many fights that sometimes I can't even remember how they started! Just last week Wednesday we argued about something petty, but he screams and throws things and it makes me uncomfortable so I slept at my mom's house. He has an entire telenovela about me in his mind where I have all these secret lovers and it irritates me to NO END! To be fair to him, I had a coworker that used to harass me BEFORE I was dating my bf and my union rep had to get involved. I never told him bc it happened before were dating. One day while on the phone with him this same coworker (who is really a jerk) made a loud noise in the background of my phone call because he knew I was on the phone with my bf and wanted to cause trouble. This caused a chain reaction where my bf has consistently accused me of cheating with this former coworker and said I only filed a report because our affair was going south and I wanted revenge (the telenovela!). He constantly brings up that coworker FOUR YEARS LATER and it makes me so angry, and according to him, that's my guilt! Meanwhile, he is the ONLY one that has literally cheated. He went to NY to be with some girl once and spent this past Thanksgiving with an ex-girlfriend!
Back to last week, we weren't really speaking to each other because I was very busy with work and my sorority so I would basically come home from work, get on a Zoom meeting, eat, and fall asleep. I was hoping this would help to avoid any problems, but it didn't. I came back to our apartment Thursday night after spending one night at my mom's because I thought the fight was over. He called an emergency mental health line and got set up with therapists, which I thought was great but he started up his telenovela making accusations about stuff that NEVER HAPPENED and creating new characters that don't exist. I got angry and tried to defend myself. He told me my voice was grating and to leave him alone or he would cut himself. I told him he was not going to cut himself and he did! He bled all over the kitchen & living room. He refused medical attention until the next day. I had an appointment for a biopsy and I took him with me to the hospital and he got treated. I finally got him to settle down...but then Saturday morning while he was sleeping I went for a hair appointment. I made certain to text him because he wants to know where I am all the time and he FLIPPED OUT asking who I was getting my hair done for and why didn't I ask if he wanted to come (he was SLEEPING!) and he started making up characters at the hair salon that I'm seeing (the salon is ladies only!) When I returned from the salon he told me his therapist told him to go no contact with me...but we live in the same house and he needed me to help him get ready for his daughter's visit. We spent the whole weekend being cordial to each other...and I even drove him to take his daughter home Sunday night. All week we were fine, then on Wednesday while at work, I get a call that the police are at my apartment because he was having a mental health crisis. I had to pick him up from the hospital and he CURSED ME OUT the whole ride like it was my fault the therapist called the police!
I was finally able to calm him down...then I reminded him that this weekend I'm driving to South Carolina to visit my sick grandmother with my older sister. These two hate each other, but if he wants to go they have to suck it up. I pack his things and I let him know we can stay in a hotel but my priority is my grandmother, I'm not going on vacation! At the 11th hour as I'm getting in the car he decides he doesn't want to go, just go ahead and enjoy my grandma & sister. I knew it was going to be something but I tried to keep in contact so he wouldn't accuse me of anything. He claimed we were barbecuing and they had a man set up for me. Meanwhile, my grandma is gravely ill and the last thing on my mind was a bbq or a man! I turned on my location, I text him, and kept him updated...he called me as soon as I got to my sister's house in Virginia. He was speaking to me regularly, being kind and normal. As soon as I smiled at my sister & he could hear that we were together a switch flipped. He stopped texting me and refused to take my calls. When I got back to Jersey he called me fake and told me not to speak to him except to let him know the date the lease ends. I've been crying since I got home three hours ago! I know this isn't right but I wanted things to work out. I don't know if there's a way we can stay together without our mental health deteriorating but this lease isn't over for another year and I can't just leave the apartment. He doesn't work and abandoning the apartment is going to destroy my credit bc he doesn't work. I don't know what to do...
submitted by jerseynegrita06
to NarcissisticAbuse [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 01:37 NotJiggyWitIt Trip Report - First time in Japan (13/5 - 26/5)
My partner and I just got back from our first trip to Japan so I thought I'd do a write up of our experience.
- 13/05: Flew into Narita Airport from Australia. Overall uneventful since we landed at around 6:30pm. Getting through customs and immigration was easy and quick thanks to the QR codes. Had a few issues with transport to the hotel. First being that the JR Suica/ticket machines don't accept foreign credit cards, which we didn't know and caused us a bit of panic thinking our cards just wouldn't work in Japan. Thankfully we had cash and were able to load money onto the Welcome Suicas with that. We were staying in Shinjuku so we caught a train to Nippori Station and transferred there. Accidentally tapped the Suica card where I shouldn't have and couldn't get through the gate to transfer. One of the employees thankfully spoke fluent English and was very helpful, he took me to the counter to get the $13 I had just accidentally been charged refunded, but I think there was a language breakdown between him and the man at the counter, as the man at the counter charged me another $13 and made me pay for a physical ticket to Shinjuku. Eventually we got to Hotel Sunroute Plaza Shinjuku around 9:30pm and called it a night.
- 14/05: Explored Shibuya, Harajuku, and Shinjuku this day. Shibuya was awesome to finally see in person, wasn't as busy as we expected but to be fair we got there around 11am. Harajuku was packed though. Overall we felt that Takeshita street seemed a bit tourist trap-y. There were a lot of people to the point where we could barely move but a lot of the shops were much the same (so many crepe shops). There were also a fair few men following people in the crowds and trying to pull them into shops, which made us a bit uncomfortable. We made our way to Kabukicho at night and loved how alive it was (also had some of the best mochi there). The lights were definitely something to behold and for what is considered the "red light district", we didn't feel unsafe or anything (except for one moment where we were followed by some guys who kept trying to get our attention).
- 15/05: Made our way to Disneysea. My partner had never been to a Disney park and I had only ever been to California Disneyland once a few years ago. Overall we loved it, the atmosphere was great, the popcorns were fun to try, and the end of night show was incredible. Not much more to say here.
- 16/05: Today was Asakusa and Akihabara. Asakusa and Sensoji were really great to see in person. We got there early before the shopping street filled up (and before most of the shops opened) and it was great to be able to walk around without the crowds of people. The temple and pagodas were bigger than we expected. We went to Akihabara afterwards and were a little let down. Not sure what we expected but there just didn't seem to be a whole lot there. The shops we went into seemed overpriced when comparing the stock to what we'd already seen elsewhere. That night we went and watched the Sumo Grand Tournament and loved it. Definitely something I'd encourage everyone to try and see once, it was an awesome experience.
- 17/05: Day trip to Hakone on this day. Very picturesque, wasn't super packed and touristy, which was nice. Around the Hakone Shrine was very busy though. There was a line about 50 people long to take a photo in front of the shrine. We waited in the line for about 40min and barely moved before we gave up and went elsewhere. Everyone at the front of the line was doing a full photoshoot with multiple phones and cameras. We got the Hakone Freepass so we hopped on the ship across Lake Ashi and caught the ropeway up to Owakudani. It was a little cloudy but we were still able to see Mt Fuji. Overall a good day, got a lot of great photos out of it.
- 18/05: Travel day today. We caught the Shinkansen to Osaka for the next leg of our trip. Checked in to Hotel Intergate Osaka Umeda and it was an incredible hotel for the price. Can't recommend it enough. Went to Dotonbori for dinner but I stupidly left most of our cash in the hotel by accident, so we couldn't get a whole lot of food. Still, Dotonbori was really fun to just walk around and look at, albeit also very busy.
- 19/05: Went to Universal Studios on this day and it might be the only day of the trip we would consider "bad". The park is not designed well for the number of visitors it gets. It was raining this day which I obviously won't blame the park for, but it did make things a bit more difficult. We went on a "quiet" day and there was still a 90min+ wait for almost every ride. Comparing it to Disneysea, it was obvious that this was an "American" park and not a Japanese park, if that makes sense. Our lunch here may have been our most expensive meal all trip and it genuinely just wasn't very nice (I know you can't expect much from theme park food but Disneysea raised our expectations a bit). Tip for anyone planning on going: disregard whatever the Universal website says is the opening time, it's 8:30am. Apparently this is just something they don't tell you. And expect Harry Potter land and Super Nintendo World to be packed no matter what.
- 20/05: Nara. This was a nice little day trip, but definitely geared toward tourists with the deer. There were some nice temples and the deer were cool to see roaming around the street and parks, but it's definitely somewhere I don't think we'd go back to. Once you've seen the deer and the temples there didn't seem to be much else around. Wouldn't say it was a bad day though, but the deer are very obviously the main draw.
- 21/05: Kyoto on this day, it was lovely. All of the old temples and shrines were great to see. We got to Fushimi Inari early in the morning so it was quiet and we were able to experience without hoardes of people. Kiyomizu-dera definitely had to be seen to be believed. The view seemed unreal. Be aware though, the old streets of Higashiyama got VERY packed, almost as busy as Takeshita Street in Harajuku.
- 22/05: Had a bit of a shopping day today. We had breakfast at a very lovely bakery near Osaka Castle and checked out the castle in the morning, then spent the day shopping around Osaka. That night we went to Shinsekai and were incredibly underwhelmed. Not sure what we expected but it wasn't what we got. A lot of storefronts were either empty or were rundown and just had a few capsule toy machines in them. It reminded us of an old carnival. We didn't stay very long here.
- 23/05: Another travel day back to Tokyo on the Shinkansen. Checked in to Hotel Sardonyx Tokyo and it was a fine hotel. Lovely view from the corner suite but the room itself needed a clean. Also had the comfiest bed and pillows of any hotel we'd stayed in this trip, granted the other hotel beds were hard as stone and the pillows weren't much better. We went to Teamlab Planets on this day as well and while it was nice, we came to the conclusion that if you've seen everyone elses Instagram posts, you've seen it all. We aren't huge social media people so we were in and out within 30-45min. I'd imagine the only way people could spend 2 hours in there is if they were taking a lot of Instagram photos everywhere.
- 24/05: Day trip to Yokohama. This may have been one of our favourite days of the trip. Yokohama was a lovely city. That was clean and modern but without the crowds of Tokyo, and it was only a 30min train ride out of Tokyo. The Cupnoodles Museum was fun and Cosmoworld was really cool to see. The Air Cabin gave us a real view of how picturesque the city was. We made our way through Yamashita Park to the Gundam Factory to check out the giant Gundam. Initially we thought it was a waste of money since it cost a bit to get in, but after seeing the giant mech move we decided it was worth the money. We aren't huge Gundam fans but where else can you see a giant robot doing that? It was just a great thing to experience. That night we went back to Tokyo for dinner and had probably the most uncomfortable dining experience of the trip. We found a street of cool looking restaurants the previous night so this night we found one that looked good, had a huge menu, and advertised that there was an English menu. We went in and were told there was a 350yen cover charge per table, which we were fine with. The lady began to seat us at a booth near the entrance to the restaurant but was stopped by a man who I assume was her boss. They seemed to begin arguing in Japanese and eventually he led us to a very cramped back room near the smoking area and seated us on a bar table. In this room were mainly Americans and sleazy looking older businessmen. The menu they gave us had significantly fewer items on it than the one outside and there was hardly enough room for us to get on to our seats. We figured that we were probably being treated a bit differently because we were foreigners and we felt a bit uncomfortable. So we just ordered a plate of gyozas and asked for the bill. When the bill came, the cover charge was 700yen (350yen per person), which was more than the gyozas. I put 5000 yen in the tray to pay and the waitress walked off with it and didn't return with my change. We sat there for a couple of minutes before the man who had seated us in this back area came back with my change and we promptly left and got dinner at a 7/11 instead.
- 25/05: Tokyo Disneyland. We were excited for this, I think I was more excited though since I had such fond memories of California Disneyland. The park was great, but something about it wasn't as good as the park in California. I can't fully put my finger on it but it felt different. It wasn't a "child vs adult" thing because I was 21 when I went to California. I think the different language on the rides played a part in the enjoyment. Not a huge part, but it just throws you a little bit. We obviously didn't expect the rides and whatnot to be in English, but we didn't think we'd notice it as much as we did. That being said, however, the rides were still obviously incredible. My partner loved the Beauty and the Beast ride and we both thought Pooh's Honey Hunt was one of the best rides we've been on (seriously that trackless system is a game changer). I loved Pirates and Haunted Mansion before getting to Tokyo and my partner, similarly, was in love with both from the first time we rode them. They cancelled the night time fireworks due to "weather" (we really aren't sure if this is the real reason as the weather was fine, no rain and barely any clouds). But overall a good way to end the trip.
- 26/05: Our last day. The flight was at 8:50pm so we spent the day packing our bags and getting some last minute shopping done. There was an earthquake when we were in the airport that made the building shake, so that was an especially interesting way to end the trip.
All in all, we enjoyed the trip. It had it's hiccups but we'd definitely go back.
submitted by NotJiggyWitIt
to JapanTravel [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 00:57 looking_within21 My BF is on our romantic vacation with another woman
I am so mad right now. I can’t even put into words why I am so mad, I should know better. After taking a long break from dating I finally started dating again. I have never really done the app thing but I figured why not give it a try? Because people lie that is why. My friends said it would be fun, we clearly have different ideas of fun. Between the guys posting 20 year old pictures, those who never actually want to meet up and my personal favorite the ones who are just looking for a hook up but lying about it, I was not having fun. One guy actually showed up in his wedding ring and said he was divorced…right, cause I am stupid. So when I met “Luke” it was like being rescued. He was gorgeous, smart, funny and actually looked like his pictures.
When I said I want to take things slow he was like great, him too. We have been dating for two months now. After about a month he said he wanted to be exclusive, I agreed I was really into him but when I wanted to take things to the next level he said he wasn’t ready. He claimed to have gone into a really dark place with hook ups and didn’t like the person he became and he wanted to do it right with me. Like a fool, I actually thought that it was kind of sweet. Month two rolls around and I am checking in with him like, is he attracted to me. He demonstrated that he was but not full sex, you know what I mean. When I want to keep going he says we need to talk first. Talk about bad timing. No one wants to hear that. We hadn’t any issues so honestly I didn’t know what to think. He tells me he is trans. This was shocking because he was nearly six foot tall and very well built. I had never met a trans man, only trans women so I guess I didn’t know what to expect. So I sat there for a few minutes asking myself does this matter. I had asked myself this before but it was theoretical, but now that it was real I wanted to give myself a moment let the news settle and see what I felt about it. Honestly, all I could think about was sex. Luke is hot and frankly I just wanted to get into his pants. We hadn’t had sex and we were making out before this conversation and he stopped to say this so maybe that is why that is all I could think about. I was pretty confident I knew what I was working with. I didn’t feel anything about it. It was like as long as the equipment works, I am good. Not my most eloquent but that is where I was at. He just stared like he was so hurt. So I didn’t know the range of trans, honestly I just thought it was people who had gender reassignment surgery, it honestly has never come up. I instantly felt bad because I would never want to hurt anyone with careless words. In my defense, I thought he had the equipment so it never occurred to me it be an issue. He was asking me how I felt about it and I was being honest that was my only issue and I was stating that but I would have said it differently if I knew it could be a thing. I am a heterosexual woman which he knew so he had to know that would be an issue. My profile said straight woman looking for straight man. What was he expecting me to say? I am flexible but the equipment is a hard requirement. Something about that pissed me off. My profile clearly said I was a heterosexual woman looking for a man. I didn’t want to be in the position of asking virtual strangers personal questions so I just said straight men to avoid being in this kind of situation.
He gave me this said puppy dog face and said he was disappointed and he thought I was more open minded than that and just left. He didn’t even put his shirt on first. Honestly I spiraled on that. I was sad and angry. Sad because I really like him and angry because I felt lied too. I felt judged. That was Thursday. We were supposed to spend the long weekend together. Obviously that didn’t happen. Then this morning happened.
I got a call from a number I didn’t know, so of course I didn’t answer but they kept calling. The number was local and all of my family is local so I thought maybe someone was having an emergency and borrowed a phone so I answered. I was wrong again. I am really starting to question my judgement. It was a woman. I am guessing you can tell where this is going. She asked me if I knew a guy named “Arron”, I was like no. She tells me she knows who I am and I don’t have to lie. I wasn’t. She tells me that she found my number in her husband’s phone. I have been dating lately but no one by that name. She starts describing him. Of course it’s Luke and the woman was his wife. Worse she was calling me because she hasn’t seen him in a couple of days so she assumed he was with me. Apparently he does this sometimes when he meets someone new. He has done this to her before. Why do people get married and act like this? I told her I was sorry, because I was. I would never date someone who is married. I told her we had plans but we got into a fight and didn’t go. I gave her all the information I had about our plans so she could try and find him. She needs to find a divorce lawyer but it’s her life.
I was livid, I am still livid but it got worse. She texted me, she found him he is at the hotel we were supposed to be at together. He is not alone. But she texted me telling me I should makes sure he isn’t using my credit card for the hotel and I should change all the financial info he had access too. WTF. So I check and the reservation was in his name but held with my credit card, I had forgotten about that. I called the hotel to make sure I wasn’t charged and their answered didn’t make me feel confident so I just canceled the card. Froze my credit the whole nine yards. I feel so stupid. I knew he was too good to be true. He was too good looking, to successful, to perfect to be single. Well he pretended to be perfect.
I keep spiraling about it. You know when you are so angry all you can do is pace and talk to yourself. I can’t tell anyone the rest of this because I am just embarrassed. This lying POS is not only married but cheating on his wife with who knows how many others and the thing that keeps going through my mind is when he said how disappointed he was in me. HOW FUCKING DARE YOU. This lying piece of human garbage had the nerve to say that to me. It is a stupid thing to be mad about all things considered but I am livid. It is a step to far. It is like when my purse was stolen and they also stole my lunch. I squirreled about that lunch for weeks, it is like that is just insulting. The other day I saw something that said women have stopped dating in record numbers, not hard to see why.
I am rambling. I hope now that I got it all out, I can stop spiraling over it.
submitted by looking_within21
to TrueOffMyChest [link] [comments]
2023.05.30 00:09 Milo_8989 Evidence
Hi to everyone, may I ask if statements from joint checking account is enough (we don’t have credit account) since I just get EAD. We have all purchases done through it for nearly 10 months since we opened our joint account. Other evidence:
- photos since we started to date
- our trips to Europe Germany, Czech Republic, Croatia, Serbia, Ukraine (before we came to the USA with all air tickets and booked hotels)
- visiting each other families and countries (with all tickets)
- photos from USA, trips, bookings, wedding, for our apartment , refurbishing apartment together, every day cooking, playing
- Wife and me(PG photos)
- total prepared over 150 photos in separated files from each country we’ve been visiting together and all explained with location who is on the photos and who took them( selfie, friend, family member, passing tourist etc.)
- joint bank accounts with both of our names my wife as primary and me as beneficiary and all statements from August last year (we have only this account and no other so each and every single purchases were done through this account)
- car insurance with both of our names on it
- payment for the car(my name as per car dealer couldn’t be on the contract because I was still waiting for documents, but we are paying from the joint account) and photos when we went to buy car, was taken by car dealer and placed also on his google maps account
- affidavits from our friends and families all notarized (9 in total)
- we have no bills to pay or rent because we been given apartment from my uncle and all bills are paid by him (we have that confirmed and explained in his statement)
- both driving license are on same address
- we are listed as emergency contacts for each other(both of us had surgeries in the USA by same doctor)
- both of us attending same online IT Academy on contract there are both of our names with same address and full names and signatures (paid from our joint account)
- For our son I am listed in the school documents as stepfather with same address for all three of us
- social media and WhatsApp chats with over 6000 exchanged media and documents
- money transfer to my Wife and Son since we started to date all the way to marriage (12 months)
- orthodontist contract for our Son where both parents signed with full name and written mother and stepfather next to our names
- filed joint tax report as married
We do have insurance but both of us individually because we were not married when company that we worked for insured both of us, if you have some suggestions for inexpensive insurance please share it!
And who ever will have time to read, please suggest what else could be added as evidence?
submitted by Milo_8989
to USCIS [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 23:54 Antibenshaprio Food for the brain.
You’re a communist. You miss the Soviet Union. You think the project can rise again, if done properly. How do you do it? Let me tell you, the answer isn’t to do something cartoonish, like start a war.
The best way to do this, my friends, is to destroy capitalism historically. You do that by attacking the enemies the communism. Who was credited for defeating the USSR? Well, none other than Ronald Reagan and Maggie Thatcher. Ever wonder why those two were SO popular back in the day? Ronald Reagan won by landslides. There’s now debate over Reagan’s importance in taking the the USSR (which he certainly did do, without firing a SINGLE FUCKING SHOT). Back in the 80’s? No question. He was almost unanimously considered one of the greatest people of the 20 century, among Thatcher, Churchill, MLK, Ali, and so fourth.
He was a crowd pleaser. His policies were widely popular. Communism is a far more left wing ideology than anything, so does it strike y’all as odd that it is predominantly left wingers who want to destroy the man? People hate him, and look for any way to tarnish him, ranging from revisionism, to false interpretations, to downright fucking lying. Same goes for the Iron Lady.
THIS is how you win a war that you already lost. History is written by the winners. History is where we came from. It’s the root to the tree. Poison the root, what happens to the tree?
Ahhh, you want proof that character assassination is going on? Well, how about we look at our friend Reagan. The man who refused to support a racist hotel (long before he was in politics), is now portrayed as nothing but a raging racist, who started the drug war. https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/local/1986/01/16/closest-friend-was-reagan-teammate/7058e682-7bab-4f70-9a72-c0d84f895622/
It’s not just Reagan, my friends. It’s our FOUNDERS. It’s George Washington himself. They want to destroy our heroes so that America falls. Ever wonder why your average non-history enthusiast talks about how much of a piece of shit Hitler was (absolutely justified), but doesn’t realize that Stalin (ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL COMMIES) had killed over 600k people before the fucking war started? He starved out his own goddamn people, yet many motherfuckers never cared to notice/remember. I would say it blows my mind, but in the end, nobody’s mind was more blown than Hitler’s.
I made an entire fucking post to say this. Pay attention to your surroundings and the agendas from the woke left. God fucking speed.
submitted by Antibenshaprio
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2023.05.29 22:31 BowlCompetitive282 Reco Wanted: Local Bank / Credit Union for Small Business
I own a small business (consulting). Right now I'm using a Big Bank for business checking, credit card, and line of credit (all free). They're OK but customer service is quite bad unless I go into a branch, and lending is nearly impossible. I'm looking to move to a smaller bank where I can get personal service when needed. Any recommendations for local banks or credit unions? My needs are pretty limited at this time but hoping to grow in the future and have a bank that can support expanded services if needed.
ETA: I'm currently looking at Bremer Bank, Bell Bank, and Bank Cherokee. Open to additional suggestions.
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2023.05.29 21:43 creeperflint The Nature of Predators - The History of Non-Sapient Predators Epilogue [Fanfic]
First Memory transcription subject: Luke Schmidt, Human Businessman Date [standardized human time]: December 18th, 2136
I was the only human in the bar. I chalked it up to timing and chance, as it wasn’t a hostile bar. Aside from a few glances and the fact that people passing by my table took great care not to touch me, I had no issues. I could barely keep my head off the table, but that was more a function of tiredness than anything. I had arrived on Venlil Prime only a few days ago, and the goofy sleep schedule messed with my brain. Barlethy Shipping did provide us with blackout curtains to set up over the windows of our bedrooms, but it was still challenging.
That wasn’t even mentioning all the work I’d been doing. I was a salesman for Barlethy Shipping, which had been established for about 50 years prior to First Contact. FTL ships were horrendously expensive, and usually only the government had access to them, but the Barlethy billionaire family cared quite a bit about expanding their business on this frontier, and were willing to pour millions into private FTL ships for their employees, as well as efforts to ensure that the Venlil legal system wasn’t a hassle. I was meant to set up business deals with aliens, using a variety of methods of varying moral standing, and although others had already done so, there was still a whole planet of opportunity.
As such, I had been talking to Venlil, viewing their wares, and traveling almost all the time I’d been here. When I wasn’t doing that, I was eating and sleeping. I really needed a break, so after fourteen hours of business, I arrived at the bar for a much-needed drink. I’d made a few successful deals thus far, so hopefully Barlethy Shipping wouldn’t mind the downtime too much.
I wasn’t really paying attention to the aliens around me, as I was rather exhausted, so I didn’t notice when the unfamiliar alien walked up to me. I did not recognize which species this was, which energized me. New things always did. The species was honestly rather ugly, which was weird because all the aliens I’d seen thus far were either cute or sleek, in my opinion. They had rough gray elephant skin with sparse thick, black hairs scattered around it, which made them look more like a hairy human than like an alien with fur. The top of their snout dangled down over their mouth, and they had short tusks and weird little giraffe horns. Their tail curled up like a squirrel’s, and their fingers were long, thin, and far too numerous. They looked like a squat, mammalian Arxur. And then, they sat down across from me.
“Hello there. You’re unique too! Isn’t that fun? Being the only one of your kind in sight really isn’t all that fun, but you get used to it,” she said, in a friendly, conversational tone that was apparently female, according to my translator.
I didn’t think that unfamiliar aliens were willing to get within an arm's length of unfamiliar humans. Maybe the Venlil or our other good allies, but I had never seen this race before. I said as much. “Pardon me, but who and what are you? I have never seen your species before, and I don’t think you’re allied with humanity.” I figured that she must be a regular here, since nobody gave her a second glance. Maybe she’d expressed wanting to meet a human for a while. I still had no idea what her deal was, though.
I think I came across a little harsher than I intended, but she didn’t seem to mind. She began, “Oh, pardon my manners. My name is Polkif, and I am a Zhetsian. You’re right, we’re not allied with humanity, and there aren’t a whole lot of us on Venlil Prime, so you probably haven’t heard of us. We don’t have a very large diaspora. I’ve been here a few years, and I’m used to being a novelty.”
I hummed, interested. Some part of me was always eager to talk to aliens, and I could indulge that now. Most of the time, my interactions with aliens were distinctly more… hostile, than I’d like, but that was unavoidable. Well, here was an opportunity to avoid hostilities! Though, I was still wondering why this wasn't shaping up to be hostile, so I asked, “Why are you comfortable walking up to random, unfamiliar humans? Even people who have been here since First Contact with us and who generally like humans aren’t often comfortable doing that. Especially since we have a reputation for being aggressive when drunk.”
Polkif snuffled, which my translator told me was laughter. After a few seconds, she said, “Well, we’re Zhetsians! We’re expected to be bold. We do have to be mindful of other species’ norms when offworld, but I don’t think they’ll kick my door down and drag me off to the predator disease facility just for being excited about talking to a human. I suppose you don’t know if they will until they do it, but I’ve gone this long without biased officers bagging me, so I figure my logic holds up. Besides, I don’t mind standing out and having to make an effort to fit in if it means I can avoid the current issues on my native planet, Miluja. Well, the issues are everywhere in Zhetsian space, but they’re especially strong there.”
I was intrigued, and thoughts of tiredness were out of my mind. Of course, there were a whole lot of aliens with all different cultures and histories, but this was new, even compared to other aliens I knew of, and was shaping up to be exciting. I would be especially tired later, but I didn’t mind the adrenaline that interest and excitement gave me right now. I prompted her, “What kind of issues?”
Polkif obliged me. “Civil unrest issues. All five Zhetsian planets are having issues with stampedes, mobs, protesting, and armed rebellion, but on Miluja it’s devolved into a civil war. Or Colony World 3, as it’s known offworld. They don’t like that we landed on naming it after Milu, since they say he had predator disease, but it’s tradition to call it that, and I like it better than the generic name, at least.
“Once the Cilany broadcast came out and reached us, it was pandemonium. Due to the anti-predator religion, a lot of people assumed that we were predators, so we split from the Federation. All the death cults and secret predator or predator-diseased sympathizers came out of the woodwork declaring this to be proof that they were right all along, and now everyone should join up with them and make a utopia, or something. Of course, all the elements that prevented those guys from making themselves known before were still there, so the government and the Federation-sympathizers cracked down on them. The rebellious elements were emboldened, though, and had quite a few guns and lots of repurposed farming equipment, so they fought back. This led to all the sympathizers still in the government to come out and support the rebellion too, except they were discovered, and you had tusk-fights in offices everywhere. It devolved from there, and now the whole planet is engulfed in civil war.
“The other planets are doing better, though not by much. Nitto is probably doing the best out of all of them, since the overwhelming majority of the government and populace was able to unite around the Nitre Rebellion’s legacy and kick the Federation out. Kipresa and Colony World 4 are undergoing low-level fighting and their share of unrest; their problems are mitigated by the fact that most of Kipresa just want to make money and aren’t up for fighting, and Colony World 4 knows that its denizens are mostly criminals, so they have a habit of not looking too closely as long as you don’t cause problems and there continue to be people willing to buy their ore. Mother Plains, our homeworld, has had more luck with the government cracking down on rebellion and dissent, but there are still decently sized patches that are held by rebel forces, and the Federation and government are growing more unpopular by the day.
“In short, there’s fighting and disruptions everywhere, though the last ship that came from Zhetsian space came a month ago, and I’m not sure how it’s progressed without me. The fact that no more ships have come is troubling enough. As for alliances, I can’t imagine that the UN wants to get involved in our civil wars, especially since most of the official governments would reject them anyway. So, we’re not allied with either the Federation or the UN, and I think we're best off focusing on getting ourselves to a stable position before helping anyone else with their problems.”
I sat back, stunned. Of course, in the back of my mind, I had figured that there might be intraspecies fighting somewhere in the Federation, but I’d started to discount that as a possibility, with how herd-focused and timid the Federation seemed. Species-wide civil wars and unrest was not what I expected. Though, if that’s what the situation back home was like, no wonder it seemed perfectly safe walking up to strange humans. I’ve known a few people from countries with civil unrest issues, and while some of them are intensely paranoid, some are fearless and barely blink at what normal people would consider notable dangers.
She continued after a few seconds. “I’m not quite sure where I stand on the issue. I am quite willing to call my home Miluja, and I have a lot of family who are farmers and on that side of the conflict, but you get leery of supporting such people after long enough away. The walls have ears when it comes to expressing dissent, you know. You’ve got to be on high alert if you want to do things the Federation government doesn’t approve of without them knocking on your door. It gets exhausting to hold such opinions after a while, in the face of all the opposition to them.”
She shook her head side-to-side slightly, and it occurred to me that she was probably looking for listeners in her blind spot. She had lowered her voice, too, so that I had to strain to hear her over the din of the bar. Even with how milquetoast that bit of opposition to the Federation ideology seemed, she didn’t seem like she wanted people to notice it. I’d had my share of paranoia, certain that the aggressive and somewhat underhanded negotiation tactics I’d used would be revealed, and I’d be fired and cause a huge diplomatic incident that would end in me being burned to a crisp. Well, her concerns couldn't have been that bad, since she seemed to settle down quickly enough. After she was done, she tipped her head back a bit to sip from her drink. Her snout prevented her from tilting the glass to her mouth all the way.
I decided to talk about myself a bit, since she seemed inclined to sit in silence, though she didn’t move away from my table. “Well, I’m sure you know about Earth. I’m here because I’m a representative of Barlethy Shipping, and I’m supposed to be negotiating deals with aliens, mostly Venlil. It doesn’t sound like we’ll be dealing with Zhetsians anytime soon, if it’s as bad as you say over there. I’ve been here for about a week on this trip, though I was here for a few weeks already during the Battle of Earth, and I’m already exhausted. Work and a weird sleep schedule will do that for you. After I’m done here, I’m going back to my hotel to sleep.”
Polkif responded, “Ah, I see. I’ve been an offworld business rep before, and it is not fun. Seeing other planets is enjoyable to a degree, but the schedule is grueling, other planets always have weird day/night cycles, and people tend to look down on Zhetsians as rebellious. I left for Venlil Prime about five years ago to help run a new branch of the farming equipment manufacturer I did sales for, though they try to hide their Zhetsian origins, and I exclusively work in non-public-facing roles. I was supposed to come back last month, but that didn’t pan out for obvious reasons. Oh well, I’ve got stable employment, since they’ve kept me on, and I think I can manage.”
I checked my holopad, and noted the time. It was 30 minutes until I wanted to go back to my apartment and sleep, since I’d scheduled an hour for this. A few thoughts flashed through my mind, most notably that getting back earlier would result in even more sleep, and that Polkif seemed nervous about discussing certain topics where others could hear. An idea sprang to mind, and I voiced it. “It’s been a pleasure talking with you, but I probably ought to start heading back to my hotel room. Do you want to discuss more things on the way? I’d love to hear more about you and your species, but it’s rather crowded in here.”
Something glinted in her eyes, and her fingers started twitching madly, bringing to mind images of sea anemones with bony tentacles. She responded, in a rather weird tone, “Oh, I’d love to do that. I don’t need to be anywhere for another three claws, so I’d be glad to discuss things on the way. Why don’t we finish our drinks and go?”
I’d almost finished my drink, so I downed the rest just as she chugged over half of her glass at once to finish it. As she hopped off the stool, I stopped leaning on the wall behind me, a poor substitute for a backrest, stretched my back a bit, and then grabbed my things and followed her.
It was rather empty outside, with only a few scattered and easily-avoidable groups of Venlil here and there on the street. I started towards my hotel, and Polkif followed. Once we’d gotten a decent ways away from anyone, Polkif started talking in a quiet but still conversational voice. “So what would you like to know?”
“Anything interesting,” I said. “Perhaps why you have a reputation for being rebellious, or why your government doesn’t like this Milu character, or why some of your planets are having it worse than others.”
“The walls have ears, but I have better vision and probably better hearing than you and most Venlil, so I’ll stop talking if there’s a chance of unwanted listeners. Do note that what I'm about to tell you is not the official history, and I could get in very serious trouble if people knew that I believed, or at least seriously considered, this stuff. I can drag you down with me if you start telling people about it. Capiche?”
This sounded serious, especially since her tone had gotten noticeably sharper. She seemed a lot more alert and less casual now, even considering the comments she made in the bar about the officials who handled predator disease, which reminded me of the old “knock on the door” of governments who took away people who opposed them, now that I thought about them. That was worrying, but it was probably something that required more context to understand. Also, it did not occur to me that aliens would have a word that translated to “capiche”, but I considered that it was context-appropriate and nodded. Polkif continued.
“Alright, so the first thing to know is that unwanted ideas and movements that spring up among us never quite manage to die, however much the Federation wants them to. We have quite a few dissident groups that are officially labeled “death cults”, as well as a lot of rebellious movements that the Federation has been working to stamp out. Many of these groups have survived centuries of opposition, and sometimes they preexist First Contact. The most notable of these groups are Linked Chains, the Steward Branch, the Inside, and the Nitre rebellion stuff on Nitto. Though, Linked Chains has spread offworld and has a pretty significant non-Zhetsian membership, so it isn’t near-exclusively Zhetsian like the others.
“What you should know is that, apart from a handful of bog-standard criminals and a few people looking for an excuse to cause harm, nobody dies or supports dying or misery in those groups. The Steward Branch is a religion that, especially now, is suspected to have been the original, true religion of Zhetsians, and which has as a core doctrine the idea that all life is precious and necessary for gaining true understanding. Including the predatory life. Linked Chains thinks that predators are necessary for the ecosystem to function properly, something that you humans seem to agree with. The Inside and the pro-Nitre stuff are the anti-Federation movements on Miluja and Nitto, respectively.
“The official accounts are pretty accurate as far as the origins of three of the movements, though Bilte is not evil, stupid, or manipulative like they portray him, the non-Steward branches are likely some combination of invented or blown way out of proportion by the Federation, and they like to underrepresent the amount of animosity that lingered after the Nitre rebellion’s resource issues were handled. Really, you need unofficial sources to get good histories for anything involving those movements. The thing they lie the most about, though, is the origins of the Inside on Miluja.
“A little over a century ago, Miluja, then only known as Colony World 3, started a program of reintroducing certain predators onto the planet in order to deal with pests. We’re a farming colony, you understand, so dealing with pests was a rather large priority, and sheer practicality overwhelmed the propaganda in this instance. The Exterminators Union threatened to withdraw over these changes, the planet called their bluff, and they left, only to realize that nobody wanted them back. A bounty system was implemented for unapproved wild predators, but a lot of other predators besides the original pest-killers started hanging around and coming out from the unannihilated parts of the wilderness that had been left when the Union left. People stopped minding, apparently. You can still access The Seven Sons of Aboulo TV show if you know where to look, it tells you something about what it was like back then. Much better than the contemporary first iteration of The Exterminators, which was a piece of over-the-top propaganda, though I digress.
“Of course, that wasn’t going to last forever. I can only imagine the reason we didn’t get shut down instantly was because we were, and remain, a bit of a backwater, and they all bought into their own lies enough that they thought we’d collapse on our own due to our changes. We didn’t, so they started helping the process along.
“The Farsul showed up to Zhetsian space and started poking around. The Farsul poking around in an unimportant, obscure species like ours can only mean trouble. They did some preliminary reconnaissance, then they threatened us if we didn’t disarm all of our civilian ships. We had the bright idea to retrofit all of our ships with guns, but apparently that encourages predator behavior, or something. Those made up almost all of our fleet! We really couldn’t afford the sanctions, scrutiny, accusations, and ostracization that would come from defying the Farsul, so we dutifully disarmed our ships, and shortly thereafter the Arxur showed up.”
At that, Polkif stopped talking, and a Venlil suddenly came out of a building that we had assumed was closed, almost hitting us with the door. The Venlil only heard the last part about the Arxur showing up, according to my calculations, and after a look of startlement that he shared with us, he turned around and headed the opposite direction. Polkif exhaled, and said, “The annoying thing about Venlil Prime is that there isn’t a night when everyone sleeps. There’s always a sizable portion of the population awake and active at any given moment, so you can’t avoid people staring at you nearly as much as you’d like.”
I bet a lot of people stared at Polkif. She seemed to be a regular in that bar, but elsewhere? Given that Polkif had stopped talking before I noticed the Venlil coming out of the building, I got the feeling that she was hyper-aware of scrutiny and always thinking about how people would perceive her every move. The walls have ears, after all. No wonder she was so noncommittal in the bar, compared to here. I figured that I should keep my observations to myself, though, and responded, “I can see that. On the bright side, not having a night means there’s nowhere you shouldn’t go at night. Wait, does the Federation even have street crime?”
Polkif snorted, which my translator told me indicated derision, same as for humans. “You’re more likely to get reported for predator disease for being out alone than to get mugged. But, yes, that will happen on occasion. Usually it takes the form of criminals running up, grabbing your bag, and running off again, no violence or confrontation involved. I know for a fact that there’s more violent crime than the Federation likes to admit to, though. Anyway, back to the story? Nobody’s watching.”
“Alright, so where were we? Farsul, ships, Arxur… Ah yes, the Arxur raid. After our fleet was significantly reduced, a fleet of more than a thousand Arxur ships showed up to Colony World 3. Normally this would be a death sentence, but a combination of tactics, guts, and on-the-ground resistance ended in us decimating the Arxur fleet, which then retreated with almost no cattle. Miluja hasn't had any Arxur problems since; they say we taste bad, and decimating their fleet probably put us firmly in the “don’t bother” camp. Fine by us! Anyway, during the battle, we’d asked around for help, but the other planets weren’t willing to divert resources, and I also suspect they wanted to avoid retaliation. They had to have known about the Farsul ship order. We also sent a few scouts further away to ask for help from other species, and that fleet did show up! Once the battle was already over and the Arxur were already retreating. Lazy cowards barely fired a single shot.
“As you might imagine, that fleet, known as the Assistance Fleet, stuck around. They offered to help us rebuild our bombed infrastructure and almost-annihilated fleet, for a hefty sum of cash and quite a lot of food. The other requirement was that we revert all of the changes we had made regarding predators and accept what was essentially an occupation. Our remaining pristine wilderness? Gone. Our new and unique ideas? Either well-hidden, taught away, or trapped in the minds of those stuck in facilities. Our wildlife? Mostly gone, although the original netry birds and jutalem are still around, despite the best efforts of the exterminators. Stubborn little bastards, they are. Some have taken them as a sort of symbol.
“The last important bit from that period is Milu. Things really sucked after the Assistance Fleet established themselves, as stated previously. Milu was a bureaucrat who schemed to smuggle out a whole bunch of information that the Outside occupiers wanted to destroy, subverted a great many efforts to diagnose people with predator disease and kill predators, and even worked to convince the physical fleet to head home instead of being threatening in our orbit. All around a stellar guy. He eventually got found out, diagnosed, and sent to a facility. The Outside tried to publicize it, for whichever reason, maybe to demoralize the Inside. It instead turned into a huge scandal, which ended in somebody blowing up the facility Milu was kept in, which resulted in several staff members dying and most of the inmates escaping, including Milu, who was never seen again. People started calling the colony Miluja around that time. Means something like “Milu’s Continuation” in the old Zhetsian language that people use to name things. As you can imagine, the Outside does not like that name, and while using it isn’t enough for a diagnosis, it will get you a whole lot of scrutiny that can easily lead to one.
“So, that’s that, mostly. Lots of fighting, lots of rebellion, lots of farmers telling their children all the things they don't teach in schools, and always the looming Federation ready to squash anything they don’t like. Personally, I’m quite surprised you lot managed to get a foothold. They go so hard on the propaganda.”
That was… a lot to take in. ‘Why does the Federation let them be like this?’ and ‘How horrible can the Federation be?’ were hardly original thoughts at this point, so I latched on to the one thing I understood well. “Well, Tarva was nice and nobody rushed us until we could handle it, and those were the lucky parts. Beyond that, it’s really a matter of time, as people see us not snapping and eating them. Personally, I suspect that the Federation going so hard on the propaganda was their undoing. They tell everyone that predators are pure evil, then predators who aren’t pure evil show up, so people figure the old framework no longer applies and they start judging things more rationally.”
Polkif hummed for a second, then responded, “That’s a decent theory. One would hope that some of that tolerance would extend to me, but I suppose you’re new, and old habits die hard. You know, there’s a few places on the planet I can’t go because of how riled up the populace is about predators, especially lately with you humans arriving. We’re the rebels, so I must be doing something horrible! Clowns, the lot of them.”
I imagine Polkif couldn’t get away with much, if what I took from her was accurate. Her race may have had some leeway with how deviant they were expected to be, but everything about her told me she was always under a lot of scrutiny. Though, this information didn’t seem like someone who perfectly obeyed every law and whim of the Federation would know about. So, I asked her, “If you’re under so much scrutiny, how do you know all this stuff? These unofficial histories don’t seem like something you could easily access.”
Polkif spoke again, but slower and with a weird cadence. “There’s more scrutiny for the Zhetsian diaspora than for Zhetsians on Zhetsian planets. That’s not to say that you aren’t always on high alert at all hours of the day because you never know who’s watching, who’s listening, who’ll report you, and what they’ll take as a sign that you have predator disease, or need your assets confiscated, or what have you. It just means that you have more trustworthy confidants and more leeway on Zhetsian planets. More people who can tell you stories and pass around contraband.
“As a relevant example of contraband, have you ever heard of The History of Non-Sapient Predators?”
I said, “No, I haven’t.”
She started twitching her fingers again, and the front of her snout flopped around a bit. I wasn’t aware she could move it. Then, she spoke. “The History of Non-Sapient Predators is one of the most well-known contraband books, at least amongst Zhetsians. It’s generally considered unsafe for us to get involved in movements offworld, and I’m not sure what contraband books exist elsewhere. Anyway, it’s up there with The Wild and Wondrous Deep, The Linked Chain, and The Social Strain. It’s an anthology of documents from the Galactic Archives, detailing the rise and fall of Colony World 3’s anti-Federation movement, as well as the context it takes place in.
“Most of the documents are publicly accessible in the Galactic Archives, just arranged in an unflattering manner. Some of them require special credentials to access, and a few are definitely not in the Archives, or reference documents that aren’t. It’s a common rumor that the Farsul Government Employee Registry doesn’t exist and is either completely hidden for some reason or a code for something else; also that many documents that used to be on the public network but classified were deleted or moved to a secret location or network after this book was created.
“It’s published under a pseudonym, and there are many theories on who made it. Whoever created it would have had to go to the Farsul homeworld, since the Archives are located there, and would have had to find a way to access non-public documents. It was definitely compiled before Milu, since neither he nor the name Miluja are mentioned. It cuts off after the Rebuilding starts. It was likely made by either a Zhetsian from Miluja or someone who greatly values Miluja, since it’s really only our history, despite the broad-sounding title. I’m sure there are other books detailing other species’ forgotten histories and interactions with non-sapient predators, but I don’t know about them. This is the history of our non-sapient predators.
“Anyway, that book is the defining source of the actual history of the Inside and Colony World 3. Copies are rare, but I used to know someone who had one back on Miluja.”
Wow. With every word that came out of Polkif’s mouth, a picture was being made of the side of the Federation that was so old and paranoid that it wouldn’t reveal itself, even now that Federation narratives were being questioned across the planet, or especially now that that was happening. Though, apparently Polkif wasn’t so paranoid as to hide it from me. I knew that my status as a human made people assume I was comfortable with predatory things, but I found that I did not take Polkif for the type to trust anyone she wasn’t extremely confident in. So I asked her, “Why are you telling me all this? I know I’m a human, but I could tell people. I’m a stranger to you.”
She snuffled again. “Remember when I said that I could drag you down with me? Well, I’ve actually been looking into you for a bit. You’re the only human I’ve seen out here, what can I say? I was interested. I’m quite good at navigating electronic things, and I happen to have discovered several dossiers of blackmail that your shipping company has provided you to help you make deals. Perhaps not as predatory as it could be, but I’m sure I could portray it properly if I needed to make this known to appropriate parties. I’m sure you know how illegal it is and how much of a diplomatic incident this would create.”
She knew about that?
Sudden terror gripped me. I liked to think of my activities as aggressive business tactics, but her statement reminded me that it was still blackmail and would likely end in jail time and a diplomatic incident if I were caught. She also refueled the paranoia of getting reported for it that had been plaguing me ever since I arrived on Venlil Prime as a businessman. And, since this random alien who was simply interested in me could find it, that meant that I was in a very precarious position. Out of fear, and desperation, I shot back, “If I reported you, wouldn’t law enforcement just take you away before you could do anything, and wouldn’t they not listen to you if you’re a known predator? You seemed to imply that back at the bar.”
She replied just as quickly, “Exterminators. They deal with cases of predator disease, or really any crime involving the Zhetsian diaspora as they like to assume that we all have predator disease. Anyways, as you’re a human, they’re much less likely to believe anything you say, and that combined with experience and security measures means I will absolutely have time to send it off before they get me. I can be anonymous if need be. And don’t you try to delegate reporting to anyone or do it anonymously; if anyone comes knocking on my door, I’m blaming you, and out this goes.”
Well, damn. I stopped in the middle of the street to think, barely noticing Polkif’s eye glittering as she stopped next to me. I really should have known that someone like Polkif would only reveal anything to anyone if she was very sure that they wouldn’t reveal anything. Whether because she trusted them as people, or because she held something over them. I drastically misjudged her; she was intensely paranoid, but so good at masking that you never knew until she was already acting against you.
The aggressive negotiation tactics already stressed me out. When combined with Polkif’s knowledge of them, they made me feel far out of my depth. My mind was racing, but something did occur to me, and I asked her, “Do you do this frequently for the sake of it, or do you want something from me? You don’t seem the type to task unnecessary risks.”
More snuffling, of what I thought was a distinctly different character than previous snuffling. Probably a malicious laughter, if I had to guess. “I did have an idea that required a human. When I said that I had no copy of The History of Non-Sapient Predators on Venlil Prime, I lied. Had to see how you reacted, after all. I do indeed have a copy that I took with me from Miluja, and have made copies of it since. I was thinking that humanity having a copy would be useful. You guys can translate it, make copies, get famous and make boatloads of cash off of it, or whatever else you can think of. The Federation doesn't have eyes or tendrils on Earth, so the book, our history, won’t die, or at least it has a greater chance not to. I have no clue how many copies there are across the Federation, but I know it’s not that many. I was under the impression that humans quite liked the preservation of knowledge and history, based on what I’ve seen of humanity’s reaction to the Cilany and Yotul situations. So, you wouldn’t mind preserving important history that's been suppressed by the Federation.”
That was… surprisingly benign. I was about ready for her to demand I fork over all of my money, go rogue with my company ship, or commit crimes against exterminators and the government. A little bit of smuggling, especially of something this important, was nothing, especially compared to the activities I’d been engaging in. I already had to smuggle in some of the negotiation material, anyway.
She continued, “As I said, this book is very, very illegal, and even as a human you’re likely to get in a lot of trouble for having it. As you’ve already been able to hide all that blackmail, you shouldn’t have a problem hiding this, but do be careful, and do not get caught. Only look at it once you’re back on Earth, away from prying eyes, and don’t let your company find out until you don’t need their support. I'd recommend keeping your identity wholly separate from your ownership of that book. As for getting it to you, I happen to know that you’re going to be going to a certain library to do research on Venlil agricultural history tomorrow - you really shouldn’t use the DailyMemo112 app, it has poor security - so when you get there, look out for the book titled “History of Agricultural Exports of Venlil Prime: Volume 18” by “Bitsly” in the agriculture section. It’s a fake cover, obviously, with a few fake pages too, but it's what you're looking for, so take it and go. You should probably buy a few other books about Venlil Prime trade, for cover. Any questions?”
Aside from the fact that she casually mentioned that she knew about my daily schedule for the remaining 2 weeks of my trip, that was surprisingly straightforward. A few plans for what I'd do with the book were even percolating in my mind; I'd translate them to English, of course, and then I could post them anonymously online, maybe I could put a paywall or tip jar in there to make money off of it? I didn't need the money, since my job paid me well, but this could blow up, and I wouldn't be one of Barlethy Shipping's spacefaring employees if I didn't keep an eye out for opportunity. None of these ideas were something I needed Polkif for, though. So, I replied, “No. Uh, thank you for telling me all this? Fascinating stuff.”
“You’re welcome, and thank you, if you pull this off successfully. Oh, and don’t tell the UN. They care quite a bit about Venlil laws and sovereignty, you know. Them knowing will attract attention that neither of us want. Never tell anyone anything unless you absolutely have to, you know. Now, I believe that is your hotel right there?”
I looked away from Polkif, and noticed that we were indeed in front of the huge, gray hotel building I was staying in. I wasn't sure how Polkif knew it was mine, but I probably shouldn't have been surprised at that point. It spoke to how adrift and detached from all non-business endeavors I was on Venlil Prime that I didn’t recognize the area around the place I was staying until it was pointed out to me. With a sudden bout of melancholy washing out some of the paranoia, I said, “Indeed.”
She flopped her snout around a bit, twitching her fingers all the while. I assumed, or at least hoped, that this was the Zhetsian version of smiling. “See you never, probably. Further contact would only be suspicious. The walls have ears, so be careful. Goodbye.”
I watched her walk off, back towards the bar. I entered my hotel, feeling dazed now that everything had time to settle in. The adrenaline was wearing off, and with nothing new or exciting to occupy my attention, I crashed hard. Exhaustion, combined with the events and emotions of the past hour, made me incapable of having thoughts more complex than a sense of paranoia and a desire to go to bed.
I stumbled up to my room and fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow, without even pulling the blackout curtains over the window. Previous
submitted by creeperflint
to HFY [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 18:02 Seamoose_Art NoP 2177: Black Terminal 
All credit for the world goes to u/spacepaladin15
. I hope you enjoy! (and if you didn't, I'd be happy to hear your critique)
--- Memory transcript subject:
Trish, Venlil civilian Date [Standardized Human Time]:
February 28th, 2177 Location:
Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
Trish didn’t make any noise to announce her presence. Her jet-black dyed fur blended in with the soft shadows. By the time anyone noticed her, she could’ve been standing there for a solid quarter-claw. She’d made a sort of game out of it, seeing how well she could keep hidden under Sasha’s all-observant eyes. Of course, everyone who could notice her was sprawled out on various couches and chairs, overfull on stew and lost in the flow of conversation. That helped. In the dim lighting and complete absence of alertness, she could even smooth out her fur with a paw and not draw any notice from them, provided she did so quietly.
Watching people from the shadows instead of greeting them was predatory behavior, or so she’d been told; in school, she was repeatedly reprimanded for not socializing properly with the other Venlil. When they forced her to stop spending so much time alone, she chose to spend time with the few human kids. They were more interesting, and they didn’t yell at her because her tail and ears didn’t move like they were supposed to. She’d never seen any of those humans sit back and watch like she did; they were nothing if not sociable, although they always seemed to know when she’d talked enough and gave her space before she started to panic. Some “predators” they were.
They were nice kids. Sometimes she wondered what facility she’d be rotting in if one of them didn’t teach her the basics of writing Fl-sharp on an old, beat up datapad. When her teachers brought in assessors, she’d talked with one of them about programming for so long that they decided to forgo the tests entirely, assuming that such a talkative kid couldn’t have predator disease. Trish could barely bring herself to speak for days afterwards in a fog of social exhaustion, but the act had been worth it.
Minutes of self-absorbed self-reflection, and still nobody had noticed her. Perhaps James had butterfingered some sedatives into their food on accident? She decided to finally make herself known with a sharp tail lash against the wooden floor.
“...Trish. I suppose you’ll tell us why we’re all here.” Sasha groggily rose to look at her as she stepped out into the light. The rest mimicked the action, dragging themselves out of stew-induced stupor to focus their attention. Trish cleared her throat.
“Thank you all for coming. I’ve gotten word of another package on the way. It’s from her.
That got their attention. James nearly fell over from twisting around to look at her. “Our mysterious unnamed benefactor again, so soon? What’s it this time, more books? Earth music?”
“Much better. It’s another unmarked.”
Last time they’d gotten an unmarked package from her, it had turned out to be a pair of pistols. Kinetic weaponry which would tear right through the flame/plasma resistant exterminator suits, though it also kicked like hell. One of them was given as a gift to a friend who lived on the dark side of Venlil Prime, and the other was concealed in Tressa’s coat. The prospect of something similar filled them all with equal excitement and dread.
“And no, I don’t have any idea what it is. All she said was to ‘be gentle with it’. It’s set to be delivered…”
Trish checked her pad again, quietly hoping that the words on the screen had somehow changed. They hadn’t.
“...at the Rising Star hotel, the one right next to the new spaceport.”
A single groan of frustration expressed itself through four different people. Tressa was the first to speak. “You’re kidding me. She’s seriously asking you to… not just the upper layer, mind you, a spaceport!
The place’ll be crawling with those flamethrower freaks, one at every corner!”
"I know. And she thinks it’s worth the risk trying to get it to us anyway, whatever it is. So we’re doing it.”
There was silence, as every one of them tried to find a reason it wasn’t worth it. Even Trish, who’d already gone through this whole process nearly a paw ago when she got the message, tried one more time to write the idea off. All of them failed. The potential reward was just too great, and it wasn’t worth breaking the trust of their fixer. She was putting a hell of a lot on the line and blindly hoping they’d reciprocate.
With a long, exaggerated sigh, James rose from his sprawled lounge to a semi-respectable slouch. “So I’m taking it that this isn’t a solo op, is it. Who’re you looking to take?”
“All of us.”
Trish spoke in a clear, somewhat monotone voice which completely belied her nerves at her proposal. Truth be told, they didn’t need to come at all. Not for practical reasons. Some of them could certainly be useful, of course, but that was hardly cause to drag every one of them out for what really could
be a solo operation. No, the real reason was far dumber than that.
The first time she’d noticed it was the night she met Burai. It was a miserably cold night, and she was nearly running to get home. Her route took her past the Tipped Quill, although at the time she’d barely noticed the building. Without any signage (much less the extensive remodeling that would come later), the establishment blended in with a thousand other dilapidated buildings on the street. She paid it no mind.
Or she would’ve
paid it no mind, but something stopped her. A physical feeling, an icy tightness around her stomach which pulled towards the bar like a magnet. She stopped, wheeled around; Burai was sitting on the front steps, checking something on his pad and shivering lightly in the wind. She’d seen the old Gojid a handful of times, but never talked to him before. She’d never had any reason to. Without thinking, without even understanding what exactly she was doing, she started to double back.
It happened again a few weeks later, in a seedy restaurant on the border of Sweetwater. This time, instead of pulling her in, it was dragging her out with urgent force. She’d already finished her food and paid, so she just let it happen, watching with curiosity as it forced her into a half-sprint away from the building. It wasn’t until she’d rounded a corner that she heard the telltale roar of flamethrowers, and by then she’d already been ferried away from the chaos.
And again, commanding her to follow a digital trail that led her straight to their mysterious contact who’d turned out to be a veritable goldmine of banned materials, books and foods and a working firearm
. And again, suggesting that she double back into the bar where she’d find Burai choking on a starfruit and unable to breath. The feeling had no words to speak with, but its command was always clear. And right now, it was telling her in no uncertain terms that the entire group needed to come along for the retrieval.
Of course, she couldn’t tell them the real reason why she wanted them to all go. She’d been making up excuses all evening, practicing a few to the bathroom mirror and shower wall. She braced herself for an explosion of hostility at the inane suggestion, squared her shoulders for the coming argument.
The silence in the room started to tear at Trish’s spirit. Were they so nonplussed that they wouldn’t even dignify her with a response? She felt tension building in her throat, thick enough to choke on. Maybe if she fainted on the spot, they’d take some pity on her. She never was a fainter, but if she forced herself to stop breathing she could make something work…
“Ahh… yeah. I thought we might, given your message.” Tressa began with a stifled yawn. “So how long do we have before leaving? Enough to get some rest?” His tail swished lazily across the floor; Trish didn’t need to remember the fine details of tail language to see the lack of distress in the movement. James went back to his sprawled position, muttering something about clearing his schedule.
Trish looked at him incredulously, and he failed to return the gesture. All of them were acting as though this was a sane, normal thing to request, starting to quietly chatter about the details of the mission in the same casual register they’d been using all night to discuss food and friends and work.
“All of you.” Trish made her voice firm. “Do you understand what I’m asking? This will not be a risk free mission, a ‘walk in the park’. Tressa, you said as much a moment ago. You didn’t seem so cavalier about this idea then.”
“Nothing we do is risk free.” James countered. “Even meeting here is a risk, right? And besides, I’ve been stuck down here too long. It’s high time I got some fresh air.”
That was hardly a real reason. Even Trish could come up with a better excuse than that.
…She decided to let it lie. If they were willing to go, there was no point in pushing back. They weren’t dumb; they knew the risks. If they didn’t want to tell her the reason they were so eager to jump on a pointlessly over-crewed retrieval mission, so be it. Who was she, to tell them to be honest with her about their motivations?
Trish leaned against a nearby couch and slumped into a more comfortable position, feeling her heart rate restabilize and her mind resharpen. Pulling out the pad again, she mulled over the details of the message one more time before speaking up.
“What we’re looking for is a light gray backpack with the UN logo on it. As I said, it’ll be handed over in the Rising Star hotel; exact location is still pending. We’ve got about 10 hours before we need to leave.”
She desperately hoped she had the time conversion between claws and hours correct, or she’d be dealing with either four underslept liabilities or a very irritated fixer who wouldn’t accept “slept in” as a reasonable excuse.
“We’ll need a few minutes to get prepared before taking Beast, and the trip up could take a couple hours if there’s really bad traffic. I’m sure you all understand why we need to be there immediately, so that possibility is what I’m planning around. That should give you all plenty of time to rest.”
Taking the multiple sighs of relief as her cue, Trish picked herself up from the floor and stalked off to one of the rooms she’d claimed as her own. She never liked these face-to-face chats, but at least the hardest part of her work was done. In the morning, she could focus on the relatively simple task of actually retrieving the package. The thought of the trip up wasn’t pleasant, per se (Beast wasn’t exactly a reliable steed), nor was the prospect of traipsing around the upper layer of City 23. Though it was undeniably beautiful, they’d be under the ever-watchful eye of the Federation at all times. Still, the stress of surveillance couldn’t hold a candle to the stress of social confrontation. Compared to that ordeal, the trip couldn't be anything but smooth sailing.
submitted by Seamoose_Art
to NatureofPredators [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 17:17 thewindows95nerd How common are these types of scams?
I apologize if this is the wrong place to ask but I just am rather curious about these scams and even the whole logic behind it.
But basically it started with me walking in Bole, Addis one night during my day layover with a local that came to help me find a nearby Tomoca Coffee Place and then invited me to get some coffee. I obliged (yes I know I was a complete idiot here) where he brought me to a well lit place that was near other shops but not something I would call a typical cafe but there was a waiter and his two ladyfriends who apparently were studying "culture" at the university. The guy kept insisting me to get some alcohol even though I just wanted coffee and that I buy a bottle for him and his ladyfriends and not to worry as it will be something I could easily pay with the Birr cash I had. I was already feeling wary but at the same time I also did not want to get into an altercation so I was ready to just try to follow along and then make my way outta there. We had normal/typical conversations about things such as my life and the life of locals here. His ladyfriends kept insisting for me to spend more time at the place for a "massage" which was when my red flags started going way up in the air and I gave them a firm "nah, I'm good". I pretty much finished up my coffee/drinks and then asked for the bill since I was trying to find a way outta here. Waiter brings the "bill" and tells me what I have in cash isn't going to cover it but that I could pay by card and would get a cheaper rate (apparently around $80 USD). I already was aware that this was going to be a scam so I chose my credit card which had the best fraud protection for this type of stuff when it comes to paying time. He and his ladyfriends asked to spend more time at the place and that we should get more to drink but I managed to make a way outta there by saying that I had to get back to my hotel and also get some food. The man then went out with me and begged for some Birr from me for his apparently ailing family member. I of course said "no" (and seriously? you'd think you would get cash from me when you just scammed me?).
I immediately went back to my hotel room and of course noticed the fraudalent charge on my credit card for around $750 USD and spent the whole night dealing with it as I had to find a way to call my credit card company to inform of the fraud where they cancelled my card and reversed the charge, and then (in my panicked state) decided to go extra and ask my hotel front desk to see if I could go to the police station to file a police report. They were kind enough to get a taxi driver to the station (who also helped translate for me to the police at the station!) and the police requested that I try to bring them a copy of my bank statement with the charge and also guide them to the place it happened with the receipt. They even sent a group of federal police officers (one of them was even armed with an AK) like an hour later to my hotel to basically see the copy of my bank statement ($750 charge immediately raised eyebrows for them) and asked me to see if I could postpone my flight that same day so that I could come with them to the place that the scam it happened since this can result in some serious trouble for the place. I didn't give any guarantees but said that I will try only for it not to work out which meant that I ended up giving my hotel the copy of my statement (with my contact info written on it incase I needed to be reached out) before rushing to the airport that morning.
But it had me thinking later today. I just don't understand this scam when this is most likely going to result in a chargeback from my credit card especially with the proof I have about it being a fraudalent transaction therefore they aren't even going to see a single bit of the $750. If anything, the scammers would have more to lose from the scam. But I never also heard this type of scam happening before since I'm so used to hearing about pickpockets in other countries or the usual begging or taxis overcharging you. So I was just curious on how common these scams are since I never encountered such a thing (though this is probably me being naive).
Also want to say that this experience never gave Ethiopia in a bad light to me even though I spent only a day in Bole because of the amount of kind and nice people that were willing to help the idiotic gullible tourist that is me after the scam such as the hotel workers and the taxi driver (I honestly feel bad for both them as they had to deal with panicked me that whole night as I didn't sleep at all). If anything, this experience sort of encourages me to come to Ethiopia again to enjoy the culture at a better light though probs with asking smaller food portions since the dish sizes at the places I ate are massive!
submitted by thewindows95nerd
to Ethiopia [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 12:30 tiotio109 masking tape on doors and a pizza party (field trip woes.)
Context: hotel is hosting a middle school field trip on a holiday weekend. Chaperones did the thing where they put masking tape on the doors to detect which kids are sneaking out of the rooms.
This group comes around the tail end of my shift around 10pm from spending a day from taking in sites and a theme park. Their chaperones decide to have a pizza party, but rather than host the party in our lobby, they opt to distribute the pizzas from one of the rooms. The plan was to have the kids come by in small groups and bring the pizza back to their assigned rooms.
And the kids all behaved themselves and no noise complaints were made...
So, one guest made at least 3 complaints by my count (2 near the end of my shift, and 1 at the start of night audit...fun times). The constant here was that he could hear kids running down the halls, yelling, banging on doors, and he assured me that he was able to see kids through his peephole. I went up to see what the fuss was about. There wasn't much to see other than maybe 3 kids roaming the halls at the time, and the chaperones handing out pizza through an open door. Had a word with them...that was about all I could do.
All the guest had to do was maybe wait it out, and that would be it.
The final complaint was the 1 at the start of night audit. At that point, a few of the chaperones left the hotel to grab a couple of drinks (can't blame them). So, of course I went up to see if any kids were roaming the halls. The hallways were in fact empty and all the kids were sealed away in their rooms. I swear this on Buttercup's horn (sorry u/SkwrlTail
I had one final word with the guest, and assured him that should be the end of it. He still insisted that he saw kids running the halls at the time. I was out of responses, and out of patience, and simply stated that I would hand off this complaint to management. According to night audit, there haven't been any additional noise complaints since I left. I anticipate AM having to field complaints, not just with this guest.
Which leads me back to the title - I'm curious as to how effective the tape really is, because I had a word with one of the kids to keep the noise down in the room. The kid opened the door and broke the seal. So, I'm thinking that the guest was either ego tripping or I'm giving these kids a lot more credit for being sneaky.
Retrospect - I don't know what I could have done differently to resolve the issue. I'm stuck on the mindset of preventing the complaint. The only dining area we have would be in our lobby. I wouldn't mind a loud lobby, but I'm not sure what issues would have come from it. I could've done a better job explaining the pizza distribution was happening on the same floor the guest was on; maybe appeal to his sensibilities and politely ask for his patience.
And although I can agree with the guest that there really isn't any reason why these kids should be so unruly, I highly doubt he's familiar with the concept of middle school kids full of churros and hormones.
submitted by tiotio109
to TalesFromTheFrontDesk [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 07:46 Alphtaku Requesting Mid-Game and Late-Game Help in My Byzantium WC+WF Attempts
I am seeking help with a World Conquest and One Faith, starting as Byzantium. (Note: My recorded playtime is 3,521 hours at the time of posting this, though I consider my "true" (i.e., not AFK) playing time to be ~3,000 hours.) Also, I have played until the end-date of the game at least once (I believe twice).
A TL:DR is at the bottom, and I will credit helpful respondents in a future "success" post in this subreddit if I am able to succeed in this endeavor. (I have previously sought help in a PDX-focused Discord server, but I would prefer to ask here instead). I will respond to replies in about 12 hours after posting this, and I truly appreciate any and all advice that can be provided.
Specifically, I begin to struggle past ~1550, due to difficulties against the AI in wars. I utilize this spreadsheet of army compositions and unit types
, (usually building half or full CW of Artillery around Mil. Tech 14), though battles become difficult for me after ~1550, and I am also often outnumbered against my opponents around this time. (Incidentally, Economic advice would be helpful in this respect, as I am reluctant to take loans due to Interest and Inflation concerns associated with them).
- Idea Groups: Influence + Administrative + Diplomatic + Innovative + Espionage
- (Justification for lack of Military Idea Groups: Previous unsuccessful attempts utilized Quality + Religious, or Innovative + Offensive, and I overall do not see any of the Military Idea Groups as valuable, including Quantity). I am willing to accept credible arguments justifying taking any number and type of Military Idea Groups.
- Religious State (Retained for the entirety of the game)
- Clerical Ministers (Retained until ~1500-1520)
- Expansionist Zealotry (Retained until ~1610)
- Enforced Unity of Faith (Re-implemented until ~1610 whenever possible)
- Primacy of the Nobility (Retained for the entirety of the game)
- Increased Levies (Recent addition to my attempts, planned to be retained until ~1600, then revoked)
- Expand the Fortifications (Recent addition to my attempts, planned to be retained until 1550)
- Monopoly on Livestock (Renewed until ~1610, then revoked)
- Strong Duchies (Planning to revoke ~1610)
- Nobility Integration Policy (Planning to revoke ~1610)
- Land of Commerce (Issued in ~1500 (I Sell Titles in 1444 after issuing the former two +1 Point privileges)
- Patronage of the Arts (Retained until ~1530, then revoked)
- Implemented whenever first available (excluding Gems (obtained from Faceting)), and revoked in ~1610 (excluding Textiles, which is revoked in ~1510).
- Government Reforms:
- T1: Reformed Byzantine Monarchy (Obtained ASAP (generally by ~1465 if the Separatist-occupied provinces are never unseiged, else by ~1480))
- T2: Compromise with the Nobility (Recent attempt adoption, previous attempts utilized "Curtail Noble Privileges")
- T3: Decentralized Bureaucracy
- T4: Curtail Clerical Privileges
- T5: Sustained Discipline
- T6: Royal Decree
- T7: Dynastic Administration
- T8: Curtail the Burghers
- T9: "Les Six livres de la République"
- T10: Regional Representation
- T11: Political Absolutism
- Tax: Largely Ignored; Minimal Churches built, excess Admin Power used for developing provinces near Constantinople.
- Production: Minimal focus; Developing Cloth and Silk when spare Diplomatic Power is available, and building Textile Manufacturies if spare money is available).
- Trade: Marketplace built only in Constantinople; Centers of Trade upgraded in the Constantinople, Ragusan, Aleppo, and Alexandrian nodes; Protect Trade Edict activated in States containing Centers of Trade.
- Gold in Kosovo: Developed to 6 Production (I cannot spare enough Diplo and Mil points until at least 1480-90 to develop the province to 10 Production, and by then I am often focused on expansion in Aleppo and Alexandria).
- My first ~50 years are an approximate recreation of Zlewikk's strategy, which uses a combination of subjects and truce-resets against the Ottomans and Mamluks, possibly bankrupting each in two wars. (Note: I do not release Bulgaria as a subject, instead letting them become independent via Separatists and full-annexing them).
- By 1510, I also attempt to Transfer Subject Naples at half-cost from Castile to obtain all of Naples at once, and Reconquest their Sicilian cores to improve their Opinion and lower their Liberty Desire. Also, I release Aragon and Reconquest their cores once Spain forms. (In the Neapolitan Reconquest war, I also take Granada for the Alhambra Monument, and I upgrade it when I have spare funds).
- By 1550, I am generally able to control up to the Alexandria and Cairo Areas in the South, most or all of Anatolia (up to the "Reestablish the Theme System" Mission's requirements), Naples and Aragon, and (if Hungary did not keep Ladislaus Posthumous) the "Northern Border" Mission's requirements. I also attempt to utilize Morocco (and possibly Tunis) as Reconquest opportunities.
- I have had mixed results with Dismantling the HRE (some runs fail while attempting this), generally waiting to attempt doing so until after the League War ends (oftentimes, I am at war when the Evangelical Union event fires, and I am unable to join the Protestant League before the war begins.)
- When successful, this is generally done in ~1580-1600.
- My ultimate goal is to Restore the Roman Empire by approximately 1650-1680, and to complete the World Conquest aspect by 1780-1790 to allow time for conversions.
- I would also like to add "One Tag" and "One [Roman] Culture" aspects to this run, but I would like to wait until restoring the Roman Empire for the new Government Reform's benefits to Culture Conversion Time. (I prioritize "One Tag" first, however).
- I consider Hungary keeping Ladislaus Posthumous to be a "restart" condition (I do not savescum/bird when attempting these runs for additional challenge and out of pride).
- I retain Greek as my Primary Culture for roleplay purposes, though I promote Turkish Culture for faster province conversions.
- I only State the entirety of the Constantinople and Ragusan Trade Node Areas. (I plan to Move my Capital back to Constantinople after it is automatically moved to Rome after Restoring the Roman Empire).
Challenging Opponent Nations:
- Poland/PLC (Particularly due to the incredible power Poland/PLC possesses with the LotN DLC)
- Austria (Even if they lose the Emperorship to Hesse, etc., they often regain it by 1520-1530, as well as potentially receiving the Burgundian Inheritance).
- France (I abandon attempting to PU them by about 1550 due to perceived time-constraints with Integrating them before 1680).
- Spain (Often allies a strong Portugal, and potentially Austria)
- Portugal (Often allies Spain and England)
Owned DLC's: Nearly all non-cosmetic/ DLC's (i.e., Unit Packs) and Music Packs. (I am only lacking the "Digital Extreme Edition").
Difficulties arise in ~1550, due to complications fighting Poland/PLC, Austria, France, Spain, and Portugal. Help likely required in Economic affairs (I have a general knowledge of Trade, which I attempt to utilize, but I generally ignore Production and Taxation). No Military Ideas are taken due to my perceived lack of value in them (I am willing to see credible evidence for their value).
submitted by Alphtaku
to eu4 [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 06:03 Metal_Florida May 29: North/Central Florida concert and festival picks.
Please note that the ticket links are usually for general admission; for VIP tickets, if available, you may have to go to the band's website. Monday, May 29, 2023
Tuesday, May 30, 2023
|The Dood, Nibiru, The Heavens, Oakflesh ||High Dive - Gainesville |
|Fromjoy, Corpse Pile, Manifest in Filth ||1904 Music Hall - Jacksonville |
Friday, Jun 2, 2023
|Madeline Goldstein, More Ephermal, Donzii ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Saturday, Jun 3, 2023
|Attack Attack!, Traitors, Belmont ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Currents, Like Moths To Flames, Foreign Hands ||Orpheum - Tampa |
|Summer Salt, The Rare Occasions, Addison Grace ||The Abbey - Orlando |
Sunday, Jun 4, 2023
|Attack Attack!, Traitors, Belmont ||Orpheum - Tampa |
|Not Promised Tomorrow, Get out of Nashville, Forged with Blood ||Pegasus - Tampa |
|Screaming at the Silence, Auditory Armory, Orchestra in Black ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|M.99, Shadow the Earth, FILTH ||O'Malleys Alley - Ocala |
|Peace Cult, Sistamatic, Deux Visages ||Stardust Video & Coffee - Orlando |
|SCHISM, New Divide, Humanity Gone ||OCC Road House & Museum - Clearwater |
Monday, Jun 5, 2023
|Ugly Kid Joe, Fozzy ||Jannus - St. Petersburg |
Tuesday, Jun 6, 2023
|Rhapsody on Fire, Wind Rose, Seven Kingdoms ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Wednesday, Jun 7, 2023
|Dying Whale, Dead Register, Moth Bite, The Path ||Born Free Pub & Grill - Tampa |
|Heart Attack Man, Super American, Arm's Length ||The Abbey - Orlando |
Thursday, Jun 8, 2023 Friday, Jun 9, 2023
|Mike's Dead, The Haunt ||Level 13 - Orlando |
|Within Chaos, Eyes Sewn Shut, Automatik Fit ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
|Jameson Tank, Parks & Razz, Outer Edge Band ||1904 Music Hall - Jacksonville |
Saturday, Jun 10, 2023
|Grass is Dead, The Coppertones ||Underbelly - Jacksonville |
Sunday, Jun 11, 2023
|Halo Scars, Mind Virus, Cypher Machine, Re-Birth ||Brass Mug - Tampa |
|Maul, Tombstoner, Plasmodulated ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Downswing, Falsifier, Bottomfeeders ||Manna Tea & Kava Bar - Sarasota |
Monday, Jun 12, 2023
|My Children My Bride, Extortionist, No Cure ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Bury Your Dead, Thirst, Edict ||Tipsy Tiki - Fort Pierce |
Tuesday, Jun 13, 2023 Wednesday, Jun 14, 2023
|Maul, Tombstoner ||Brass Mug - Tampa |
|Spotlights, Skyliner, The Darling Fire ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Thursday, Jun 15, 2023
|Drain, Drug Church, Magnitude, Gel ||Brass Mug - Tampa |
|Halocene, Lauren Babic, Alphamega ||Level 13 - Orlando |
|The Convalescence, Summoner's Circle ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
|pulses., With Sails Ahead, I Met A Yeti ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Friday, Jun 16, 2023
|Halocene, Lauren Babic, Alphamega ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Saturday, Jun 17, 2023
|Roxx, Re-Birth, Cyber Machine, Haloscars ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Hollow Leg, Clamfight, Moat Cobra ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
|Every Avenue, Makeout, Say We Can Fly ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Sunday, Jun 18, 2023
|Crossbreed, Cultus Black, Cypher machine, Davey Partain ||Orpheum - Tampa |
|Defy the Tyrant, Losing Daylight, Shadow the Earth ||Kona Skate Park - Jacksonville |
|Breed, Gillian Carter, Audible Parts ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Wednesday, Jun 21, 2023 Thursday, Jun 22, 2023 Friday, Jun 23, 2023
|Crossbreed, Cultus Black, NoSelf, The Dev ||Level 13 - Orlando |
|Bodybox, No Zodiac, High Pressure ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Dikembe, Camp Trash, Glazed ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Saturday, Jun 24, 2023 Sunday, Jun 25, 2023
|Dream Theater, Devin Townsend, Animals As Leaders ||Hard Rock Live - Orlando |
Monday, June 26, 2023
|No/Mas, Knoll, Shock ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Tuesday, Jun 27, 2023
|We Are the Union, Kill Lincoln, Catbite ||The Social - Orlando |
|No/Mas, Knoll ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Wednesday, Jun 28, 2023
|Yungblud, The Regrettes, Caspr ||Jannus - St. Petersburg |
Thursday, Jun 29, 2023
|D.R.I., Metalriser ||Underbelly - Jacksonville |
|Peter Frampton ||St. Augustine Amphitheatre |
Saturday, Jul 1, 2023
|The Cure ||Amalie Arena - Tampa |
|D.R.I., Metalriser ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Sunday, Jul 2, 2023
|D.R.I., Metalriser ||Brass Mug - Tampa |
|Liliac, Fortune Child ||The Twisted Fork - Port Charlotte |
Thursday, Jul 6, 2023 Friday, Jul 7, 2023
|Godflesh ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Saturday, Jul 8, 2023
|Sad Summer Festival ||Coachman Park - Clearwater |
|Subdivisions, Violence System, The Fallen Sons ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Sunday, Jul 9, 2023
|Memphis May Fire, Norma Jean, Secrets ||The Beacham - Orlando |
Monday, Jul 10, 2023
|Memphis May Fire, Norma Jean, Secrets ||High Dive - Gainesville |
Tuesday, Jul 11, 2023
|blink-182, Turnstile ||Amalie Arena - Tampa |
|Orthodox, Cell, Chamber ||Crowbar - Tampa |
Wednesday, Jul 12, 2023
|Analepsy, Cognitive, Wormhole, Nectoricgorebeast ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Thursday, Jul 13, 2023
|Analepsy, Cognitive, Wormhole, Nectoricgorebeast ||Crowbar - Tampa |
Friday, Jul 14, 2023
|Staind ||Seminole Hard Rock - Tampa |
Saturday, Jul 15, 2023
|Staind ||Hard Rock Live - Orlando |
Monday, Jul 17, 2023
|Obituary ||Brass Mug - Tampa |
Tuesday, Jul 18, 2023
|Cenotaph, Horrific Visions, Architectural Genocide ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Friday, Jul 21, 2023
|Agents of Chaos, Black Clash ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Saturday, Jul 22, 2023
|Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, Bryan Adams ||Amalie Arena - Tampa |
|Mudvayne, Coal Chamber, Gwar, Nonpoint, Butcher Babies ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
|The Final Sound, Abbey Death, Layne Lyre ||New World Music Hall - Tampa |
|Yosemite In Black, Endbringer, Murder Afloat ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Sunday, Jul 23, 2023
|Yellowcard, Mayday Parade, Story of the Year ||Daily's Place Amphitheatre - Jacksonville |
|Less Than Jake, Voodoo Glow Skulls, Devon Kay & the Solutions ||House of Blues - Orlando |
|Rising Up Angry, Tragic, Legions Blind ||Kona Skate Park - Jacksonville |
Tuesday, Jul 25, 2023
|Yellowcard, Mayday Parade, Story of the Year ||Yuengling Center - Tampa |
|Endbringer, Yosemite In Black, Heavy Hitter ||1904 Music Hall - Jacksonville |
Thursday, Jul 27, 2023
|Fall Out Boy, Bring Me The Horizon, Royal & The Serpent ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
Friday, Jul 28, 2023
|Havok, Toxic Holocaust, I AM, Hammerhedd ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Saturday, Jul 29, 2023
|Between the Buried and Me, Rivers of Nihil, Thank you Scientist ||Jannus - St. Petersburg |
|Round Eye, No Fraud, Caffiends ||Will's Pub - Orlando |
Sunday, Jul 30, 2023
|Between the Buried and Me, Rivers of Nihil, Thank you Scientist ||Beacham - Orlando |
|Southpaw, Highest Crown, Fortitude, Dead Mirrors ||Born Free - Tampa |
Thursday, Aug 3, 2023
|Crobot, Rickshaw, Billie's Burger Patrol ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Saturday, Aug 5, 2023
|Underoath, The Ghost Inside, We Came As Romans ||Yuengling Center - Tampa |
Sunday, Aug 6, 2023
|Disturbed, Breaking Benjamin ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
|Underoath, The Ghost Inside, We Came As Romans ||St. Augustine Amphitheatre |
|Sanguisugabogg, Kruelty, Vomit Forth ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Wednesday, Aug 9, 2023
|The Queers, The Radio Buzzkills, The Jasons ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Friday, Aug 11, 2023
|Pyrexia, Cerebral Incubation, Atoll ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Sunday, Aug 13, 2023
|The All-American Rejects, New Found Glory, The Starting Line ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
|Black Flag ||High Dive - Gainesville |
Wednesday, Aug 16, 2023
|Alesana, Vampires Everywhere, Limbs ||Level 13 - Orlando |
Saturday, Aug 19, 2023
|The Offspring, Sum 41, Simple Plan ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
|hed p.e., Lydia can't Breathe, Razorz Edge ||Jack Rabbits - Jacksonville |
Sunday, Aug 20, 2023
|Left to Suffer, Distant, Justice for the Damned ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Tuesday, Aug 22, 2023
|The Smashing Pumpkins, Interpol, Rival Sons ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
Wednesday, Aug 23, 2023
|The Mezingers ||Underbelly - Jacksonville |
Thursday, Aug 24, 2023
|Bless The Fall, Caskets, Kingdom of Giants ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Saturday, Aug 26, 2023
|Clutch, Giovanni & The Hired Guns, Mike Dillon ||Jannus - St. Petersburg |
Wednesday, Aug 30, 2023 Thursday, Aug 31, 2023 Saturday, Sep 2, 2023 Sunday, Sep 3, 2023
|Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Ministry ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
Tuesday, Sep 5, 2023
|Spitalfield, Rookie of the Year, The Future Perfect ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Wednesday, Sep 6, 2023 Friday, Sep 8, 2023
|Bad Omens, ERRA, I See Stars ||Jannus - St. Petersburg |
Saturday, Sep 9, 2023 Sunday, Sep 10, 2023
|The Waning Moon, Palace of Tears, Rux Vendetta ||Hooch & Hive - Tampa |
Wednesday, Sep 13, 2023
|Angelmaker, Vulvodynia, Flasifier ||Conduit - Orlando |
Friday, Sep 15, 2023 Sunday, Sep 17, 2023
|3 Doors Down, Candlebox ||Daily's Place Amphitheatre - Jacksonville |
|Dance Gavin Dance, SiM, Rain City Drive ||Hard Rock Live - Orlando |
Tuesday, Sep 19, 2023
|Avenged Sevenfold, Falling in Reverse ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
|Wave to Earth, slchld ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Thursday, Sep 21, 2023
|Scowl, Militarie Gun, MSPAINT ||Conduit - Winter Park |
Friday, Sep 22, 2023
|Scowl, Militarie Gun, MSPAINT ||1904 Music Hall - Jacksonville |
Sunday, Sep 25, 2023
|Cavalera Conspiracy, Exhumed, Incite ||Beacham - Orlando |
Friday, Sep 29, 2023
|The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus ||High Dive - Gainesville |
Saturday, Sep 30, 2023
|CIRCLE JERKS, TSOL, Negative Approach ||Underbelly - Jacksonville |
|Shinedown, Papa Roach, Spiritbox ||MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa |
Thursday, Oct 5-7, 2023 Tuesday, Oct 10, 2023
|NOFX ||Vinoy Park - St. Petersburg |
|Flogging Molly, The Bronx ||House of Blues - Orlando |
Wednesday, Oct 11, 2023
|Ne Obliviscaris, Beyond Creation, Persefone ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Saturday, Oct 14, 2023
|Ne Obliviscaris, Beyond Creation, Persefone ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Fit For a King, The Devil Wears Prada, Counterparts, Landmvrks ||The Ritz - Tampa |
Sunday, Oct 15, 2023
|Beast in Black, Dance with the Dead ||Orpheum - Tampa |
|Fame on Fire, Kingdom Collapse ||The Social - Orlando |
Tuesday, Oct 17, 2023
|Beast in Black, Dance with the Dead ||Conduit - Winter Park |
|Motionless In White, Knocked Loose, After the Burial, Alpha Wolf ||Hard Rock Live - Orlando |
Wednesday, Oct 18, 2023
|Atilla, Gideon, Until I Wake, Ten56 ||Underbelly - Jacksonville |
Friday, Oct 27-29, 2023 Tuesday, Nov 7, 2023
|Atilla, Gideon, Until I Wake, Ten56 ||Orpheum - Tampa |
Wednesday, Nov 8, 2023
|Protest the Hero, Moontooth ||The Abbey - Orlando |
Friday, Jan 24, 2024
|Protest the Hero, Moontooth ||Orpheum - Tampa |
|Kansas ||Florida Theatre - Jacksonville |
submitted by Metal_Florida
to floridarockcommunity [link] [comments]
2023.05.28 22:25 not_wingren Dev Diary 52: Baashidi Lore Dev Diary
| || |“We are the people of Baashi, he who led us from the deserts, he who made treaty with the dwellers of the ocean, he who slew the great chiefs of the Nikhuva and took from them their pearls and cowrie shells. It is in this year, which all civilized peoples know as the year of the star Dulasmag, that I write to you of the situation of our people. Of the wisdom of Qasri Aqoon, where scrolls are stacked like coins in a vault. Of the wealth of Qasri Maroodiqya, whose markets never want for the ivory of whale nor elephant. Of the honor of Qasri Abeesooyinka, who feeds many mouths and guards yet many more from the lizard demons. Of the nobility of Qasri Ubakhiyo, where the civilization of the Jasiir Jadid meets the savagery of the Tanizu barbarians. Of the cunning of Qasri Bariga, whose navigators and traders bring the far off knowledge of Haless to the shores of the Jasiir Jadid. And finally of the queen of cities. Qasri Baashi, the city of glory and death where no man save the noblest or bravest dare dwell. It is with these actors that our tale begins. May fortune and the divine laws of the world smile upon our people, for it is the age of our glory.” submitted by not_wingren to Anbennar [link] [comments]
- Dayakh Baare in the foreword of Lessons of the Peace, a treatise on rule.
A culture map of the Baashidi. There’s also [REDACTED], which isn’t on screen at the moment.
A religion map. You can ignore that little blue province. It’s nothing important. Who Are the Baashidi?
The Baashidi are a group of humans living in southern Sarhal bound by a shared language and historical ties to the hero Baashi as well as the ancient Jinnakah and Ardimya sultanates. Their culture group also includes the Guryadagga (People Who Stayed at Home), an umbrella term used for the people living in the lands that the Baashidi migrated out of long ago.The Baashidi call their home the Jasiir Jadid (New Peninsula) and term the lands of the Guryadagga the Jasiir Doog (Homeland Peninsula). Their culture is split into three groups: The Suhratbi, who live in the Suhratba plain. The Dhebiji, who dwell in the thin peninsular land of the Dhebij, and the Ashamadi, who occupy the eastern portion of the Ashamadiat plain.
There are five kingdoms among the Baashidi: Qabiika Baddabi, Qabiika Beeragga, Qabiika Weggabiga, Qabiika Dadubakha, and Kabilu Gawakhiza. Qabiika roughly translates as royal tribe, with Kabilu being a corruption of the word used in some parts of the Ashamadiat.
The Dhebiji and the Suhratbi are the original Baashidi, formed as cultures a millenia ago out of migrants from the lands of the Ardimyan sultanate as it was destroyed during an event known as the Great Death, a consequence of the Day of Ashen Skies. The distinction between them is partially geographic and political, but also references how much of their ancestry they trace to the Nikhuva people, whose tribes occupied much of the Dhebij in ancient times.
The Asahamadi were incorporated into the Baashidi world centuries ago, made up of a mix of Dhebiji settler and Baashified Tanizu. They still maintain some traditions from Tanizu, and some of them even practice the rites of the Beast Memory over Baashidi religion.
The Baashidi have an ancient pact with the merfolk, who inhabit the seas around them. Baashidi cities are built with sunken areas and canals to accommodate merfolk swimming through them, and the great friendship between the two peoples is a source of Baashidi pride and their success as seafarers.
The Baashidi are well known for their poetry, with the skill highly prized among all levels of Baashidi society due to their belief in its magical power. Formal court poetry follows specific forms that draw upon mathematical formulations and sacred geometries, while its more folk practice is often as long form sung tales of an individual’s glory or dishonor. Those who master either form are respected for the power they wield, and it is not unknown for even the highest to be struck down by a curse poem from an offended poet. The Ardimya Sultanate and the Great Death
Ardimya was a Jinn, a being of magic and elemental power whose kind ruled over Sarhal and Bulwar at various points in ancient history. Her history prior to appearing in East Sarhal is unknown, but she came from somewhere west, fleeing other Jinn, and led a great caravan of her servants through East Sarhal in an event known as The Great Procession. She gave many gifts to the people of the lands she passed through, something that we’ll cover in more detail in a dev diary on the [redacted] system. Eventually, she arrived in the lands of the Jasiir Doog, where she brought the local tribes under her influence through both gifts and force, chief among them the tribe of the Nasmaneen, who served as her priests.Ardimya’s sultanate was a powerful but isolated state. The strongholds of most of her kind were in West Sarhal, and Ardimya had little interest in those of her kind who were not her servants, not even those who fled from the Jinn-Binders in Bulwar. At the Lizardfolk Kingdoms dominated southern Sarhal, which they considered to belong entirely to them. Ardimya spent a great deal of effort staving off lizardfolk conquest of her sultanate, a losing war that saw her resources stretched. This all changed in 7700 BAS, when the precursor elves defeated Ardimya in a war, forcing her to pay tribute, while at the same time they ravaged the lands of the lizardfolk.
While the precursors eventually left due to their civil war, Ardimya’s image in the eyes of her people was forever tarnished, eventually leading to an assassination attempt by one of her sons and the Jinn’s descent into madness. Matters were made worse when Ardimya was ravaged by the attacks of the Deep Devils, an event which afflicted all of coastal Sarhal. The weakness of their mother and her clear loss of sanity prompted her remaining sons to rebel against her, launching the sultanate into a civil war.
Though Ardimya won the son civil war, her victory would be a bitter and short lived one. The Day of Ashen Skies occurred only 40 years later, banishing all of the remaining Jinn, including Ardimya. Though this was a catastrophic event for most of the world, it was near apocalyptic in the Ardimyan sultanate.
Enchantments became unbound as magical storms which scoured and warped the land, killing millions. Additionally, the civil war had been a long and bitter struggle between family, a conflict where horrific magic and monsters had been unleashed. Without their masters and with the rules of magic changing, these creatures were free to wreak havoc as they wished. None will ever truly know what befell most of the sultanate’s cities, but the survivors who were not simply killed in this initial wave of devastation found themselves locked in battle with the Qeyikul, anthropotrophic humanoid monsters of unknown origin who devoured entire cities of survivors.
Most of those who survived became nomads, engaged in a constant desperate struggle to survive the hostile environment that their home had become while their heels were dogged by monsters. From among these fragmented bands arose a hero known as Baashi. A young warrior who fought with legendary skill and valor, he rallied groups of survivors into an army that would eventually slaughter the main mass of Qeyikul alongside help from the Nasmaneen, who had managed to hold the capital city of Ardim Qarast against the tide of death. Baashi was offered a place of honor among those in Ardim Qarast but refused it along the line that his followers had come from the tribes oppressed by Ardimya and the royal tribes. He and his followers went west, while the royal tribes founded the sultanate of Jinnakah, which would eventually collapse in 789 AA, leaving the Guryadagga as nomads dwelling in the lands of the empire they had once ruled. The Guryadagga
The Guryadagga, as mentioned above, is the name applied to those who remained in the Jasiir Doog after the events of the Great Death and Baashi’s march to the west. They are split into four royal clans: The Nasmaneen, the Qayneen, the Muudeyneen, and the Samaaneen. All of these are descended from the original royal tribes of the Ardimyan sultanate, though now split into many disorganized subtribes. They call their land “Ardimya’s Land” from which Cannorians call it simply Ardimya.
The Nasmaneen managed to hold onto some power after the Great Death, using the magic of Ardimya’s city to keep their lands fertile and maintain the lifestyle of luxuries they had been accustomed to during the days of the Ardimyan sultanate. However, the magic of the city was damaged by the events of the Great Death and the desperate Jinnakans would send expeditions into the lands visited by Ardimya’s procession in search of a way to restore. This would lead to the creation of Bwa Dakinshi as a Jinnakah puppet state, though this was the only notable result. The sultanate would collapse by 789 AA, and the Nasmaneen dispersed as nomads, attacked by other Guryadagga tribes who had long been envious of their rule over Ardim Qarast.
In 1444 the Guryadagga exist entirely as nomads, sustained through trading precious materials found in the desert or by offering their services as mercenaries to fight off Qeyikul attacks in the eastern lands of Qabiika Baddabi.
They and the lands of Ardimya will see a great change and the birth of something new in the time period of the game. But I’ll leave that to a future dev diary. The Merfolk
Baashi first met the merfolk in 60 AA, when he and his followers attempted to escape a horde of Qeyikul via hastily constructed rafts. The merfolk, recent arrivals to the region, took pity upon the humans and saved them, guiding their vessels to a safe island, where Baashi swore a pact with the merfolk chiefs and founded the city of Qasri Baashi above the nascent merfolk villages there. From this point, the merfolk and the Baashidi were joined in cause, and the two people helped each other prosper, both refugees from lost homelands.
Merfolk do not know their own origins, but know that their ancestors felt a great sense of loss for an unknown homeland. Whether they were once land-dwelling people or refugees from the deep sea is unclear, but they arrived in Sarhal a few decades after the day of Ashen Skies, leading some Cannorians to believe that they are Ruinborn. The Baashidi themselves believe their friends to be exiles from the realm of water, fleeing the collapse of a cruel Jinn’s realm in the same way that they did.
They are a generally xenophobic people who prefer to deal with the above seas world through their Baashidi partners, trusting in their ancient friendship and the respect that the Baashidi have for them to ensure they get a fair deal. Many Sarhali peoples have mistaken isolated merfolk sightings for the presence of water spirits or godlings, and the people of Fangaula and Fahvanosy both have a reverence for the creatures, even if the merfolk themselves avoid contacting them.
Merfolk can breathe air, but must skin their skin wet in a similar fashion to marine mammals. They and the Baashidi have invented forms of magic and crude devices which allow them to sustain themselves on land for prolonged periods, but these are expensive and don’t make up for their lack of legs, meaning only magically adept or wealthy merfolk can spend any real time away from water. For the most part, their existence is confined to the seas and to areas near the coast.Those merfolk living close to or within Baashidi settlements often consider themselves to be citizens of the above the seas world, and enjoy full equality within it.
The merfolk are not the only denizens of the deep but they are the only ones that are friendly. The Baashidi have heard tales from their friends of monsters and vile creatures beneath the waves, and are sometimes requested to send aid when the merfolk kingdom finds themselves engaged in war with those below.
The merfolk themselves will be in game, though their culture won’t exist on the map. You’ll learn more about the merfolk estate and how you can interact with the Baashidi’s underwater allies in a future dev diary. The History of the Jasiir Jadid
The Baashidi themselves settled in various small villages near the coasts and their merfolk allies. Over time, these settlements grew into city states which would find themselves as tributaries of the Jinnakah sultanate, who saw themselves as the premier power in southern Sarhal and ruled over many south Sarhali humans in addition to the Baashidi. In 480 AA, the expanding lizardfolk kingdom of Karassk would go to war with Jinnakah over the lands of the Jasiir Jadid, making most of the Baashidi their tributaries. The era of lizardfolk rule would allow the Baashidi to grow and develop their powerbases under the mostly distant lizardfolk, and when Karassk’s power began to decline in the 7th century, the Baashidi were able to become independent. For the first time in history, they were no longer under the shadow of an ancient empire and were free to choose their own direction as a people.
The immediate centuries after the independence of the Baashidi were an age of warfare and strife, as the various Baashidi polities attempted to consolidate their power and gain advantage over their rivals. Perhaps the most important conflict fought in this time is the Dagafita, which marked the end of the period of warfare. The Dagafita was a series of wars that began in 1151, fought as a struggle for dominance of the Ashamadiat between Qabiika Beeragga and an alliance of the northern powers consisting of Qabiika Weggabiga, Qabiika Dadubakha, and Kabilu Gawakhiza. The conflict engulfed the entire Baashidi world until 1208, when Sadealdhahk the Wise assassinated his father and brought peace between his kingdom and its rivals. He renounced his claims to the former Beeraggan colonies in the Ashamadiat and sent gifts to the north to make restitution for the wrongs committed by his kingdom in the past. The Treaty of the Dagafita would become symbolic of a new era of peace and cooperation in the Baashidi world, remaining still unbroken in 1444.
Sadealdhahk and his peers were influenced by a new religious movement sweeping through the Jasiir Jadid. A codification of the various folkloric beliefs from previous ages, it also taught a philosophy of dedicating oneself to the pursuit of knowledge and understanding of the divine nature of creation. This new religion and era of peace would be the seed of a Baashidi golden age, known as the Dasr Sharaf. Rinta Seekers
Rinta Seekers (Truth Seekers), is a religion developed by the 12th century philosopher Kabil Hadni, who sought truth in the many hundreds of beliefs that fell under the umbrella of the Habab Zar (Old Exorcism or Old Spirits). Hadni’s religion taught that the gates to heaven were guarded by mortals, who had rebelled against the lesser gods the True Creator had stationed to guide the world and watch over heaven. These gods became corrupted by the power they wielded over the material world, and so the enslaved souls of heaven slew them and spread their remains across the sky, where the dead gods can only weakly inflict their evil upon the world. He believed that the mortals in heaven sought to avoid becoming corrupted by the gods, and would only allow those who achieved enlightenment to pass through the gates. Hadni taught that no mortal could achieve enlightenment in life, but that seeking an understanding of the divine law which undergirds the world would help protect one from the evils the dead gods sought to inflict upon them. The religion is part philosophy of life and part collection of protective rituals, officiated in equal part by learned scholars in formal settings as it is by itinerant ascetic holy men.
Rinta Seekers is the great pillar of Baashidi and merfolk life. Its philosophy shapes the way that they relate to each other, and its exhortion to seek knowledge motivates Baashidi scholar-adventurers to learn the secrets of the entire world. Baashidi magic:
There are two types of mages among the Baashidi, Mwalim and Darwiiz.
Mwalim are studious scholar mages who practice a magical tradition based on reason and logic. Their magic utilizes mystical alignments of numbers and alchemical formulas and they also derive power from knowledge of astrology and interpreting the movement of the heavens, making them quasi holy men who are trusted to conduct auguries and ward from evil influence households and courts that hire them. Before casting all but the most basic of spells, they imbibe strange elixirs and do ritual dances mapping out mystic geometry in order to enter a higher state of consciousness. This trance is described as an intellectual ecstaticness that is believed to partially connect them to the realm of paradise. Many are also scholars of renown, writing treatises on history; philosophy; and mathematics, as well as studying natural laws in order to improve their own magic and alchemy, and practicing formal court poetry.
Darwiiz are wandering mystics who practice a mixture of witchdoctory and spirit binding alongside ritual trances similar to that of the Mwalim. According to tradition, Darwiiz cannot cut their hair, drink the milk of an animal, carry salt, nor carry any tools for the making of or extinguishing of fire. Peasants and lords alike are obligated to provide a Dwariiz with hospitality and food, which a Darwiiz is obliged to repay with a performance of story, music, and dancing, alongside any needed magical aid. Mwalim enjoy the same privileges as Darwiiz, being entitled to hospitality, but see these and the other traditions of the Darwiiz as relics of a past era and the behavior of misguided folk magic practitioners.
Mwalim are more trusted by nobility, being highly influential within courts and scholarly circles. Darwiiz, due to their wandering nature, rarely enter the courts of kings or other nobles but are often the only source of magical aid that rural villages and the rougher adventurers will be able to gain aid from.
Darwiiz are far more common among the tribal and rural peoples, but no noble would ever turn one of them away or disrespect them. Influential Darwiiz have made their ways into the courts of kings before, and been trusted spiritual and practical advisors. 1444 and the Dasr Sharaf
The Baashidi word in 1444
In 1444, the Baashidi are in the throes of their golden age, experiencing the benefits of age of peace and cooperation. When you jump into the game, the Dasr Sharaf is ongoing event that has the potential to springboard you into success. This is the age of the Baashidi’s height as a civilization, and you as a player will be able to determine how high they ascend.
Open warfare between the Baashidi kingdoms themselves is unthinkable, and their rising power has led to them looking outwards for expansion.
The island of Zyumaklai is the first step of this expansion, captured from Butuguzi by Kabilu Gawakhiza in 1420. It is the first of possibly many Baashidi possessions in seas far from their home.
The other notable expression of Baashidi expansionism is the tiny state of Hisraad. A group of scholar-adventurers granted control of a mountain-fortress by the queen of Qabiika Dadubakha, they use their base to conduct expeditions into lizardfolk lands hunting for ancient knowledge, and have ambitions of conquering their own state there. Only time and you the player will tell if they succeed, and whether they are the precursor to more such expeditions.
The Scholar-Adventurers of Hisraad. Note the gfx is not final.
Hisraad is an interesting tag that is focused around the Baashidi expedition mechanics, which are relevant for all of the Baashidi countries, not just Hisraad and Qabiika Dadubakha. We’ll talk more about them in a future dev diary. Trade in Sarhal
It would feel remiss to have a dev diary about Sarhal’s greatest seafarers without also including some information about trade in the greater continent of Sarhal.
The trade mapmode.
As you can see from the trade map, Sarhal pulls trade from Haless and Rahen towards Cannor. In 1444 this route functionally doesn’t exist, but as the Baashidi, Cannorians, and other trade focused powers in Sarhal, you’ll have the opportunity to bring the riches of Haless to and through Sarhal. Eagle eyed viewers might also see some changes in Rahen and southern Haless. The West Rahen Gulf has been split to accommodate the intended flow of trade with Sarhal, and several trade nodes have been adjusted to account for this. The gulf and the Ringlet Sea are going to be very lively areas in the Sarhal update, with pirates, colonizers, and trading kingdoms all trying to get their piece of the pie. You’ll also note that Eastern Haless flows directly towards Sarhal. As a Cannorian colonizer, you’ll want to establish a presence in Ardimya to control Halessi trade without needing to conquer huge amounts of land (You’ll also want a colony there for…other reasons)If you look at Sarhal for a bit, you’ll see the traditional trade routes through the interior of the continent that have existed for most of the history of settled states there. Gnollish traders carry slaves, salt, spices, and ivory across the breadth of the sahel and sudan of Sarhal, bridging the human civilizations of East and West Sarhal through this distant trade. The movement of West Sarhali slaves into East Sarhali is of great importance to the civilizations of East Sarhal, as is the flow of East Sarhali gold and finished goods to West Sarhal. Control of this trade is vital for a gnollish power, and the effect of greater sea trade on this ancient highway will play a part in the stories of the states of the interior.There’s one more notable thing about trade in Sarhal (or rather something with trade in its name), but I’ll leave that for a future dev diary about a particular people of no small import. WE NEED YOU
I’d like to end this dev diary by reminding people that Anbennar is a product of the community that supports it, not a distant dev studio. That means you can contribute to Anbennar and make content for it. We have plenty of passionate and talented people working on making content for Sarhal and other parts of the mod, but we always need more.If you’re interested in helping out with Sarhal or any other region, hop on to the discord and ask around. You’ll even get your name in the credits of the release. https://discord.gg/anbennar
A new challenger to Anbenncost's title has appeared. The city of Qasri Baashi is split over two provinces, representing its nature as a huge sprawling slum. Trade good mapmode. Those ivory provinces are from herds of pygmy elephants formerly bred by Ardimya as pets. I wonder why I included this image? Must be a mistake, but I'll leave it here.
2023.05.28 19:09 IntrepidPrune3376 Thoughts on Career Starter Loan
Hello all. I am currently an ROTC cadet scheduled to commission May of next year into AD. I have recently been looking at the Career Starter Loan from Navy Federal Credit Union. I don’t have any debt in any form right now and don’t anticipate needing this loan to pay off any current or near future expenses. However the interest rate of 2.99% on $25,000 and not having to make payments on my loan until 180 days after I commission is very interesting. What if I was to take this loan put all $25,000 plus $2,000 of my own money in a CD for 18 months at 5.2ish percent APY then just pay off the whole loan when my first payment comes around in a year and a half from now (no early repayment fees). I’ve been doing the math with a CD calculator and I think I’ll make around $2000 after taxes. What are your thoughts on this? Is there something I am not thinking about?
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