Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Catch 8/29

Met with the homeowner's insurance adjustor today - a very nice man, whose constant references to my "wife" were too amusing and sweet to correct, and because explanations are, well, tiring and tiresome. As we wandered around the dirty, ravaged, gutted shell of the house, he snapping pictures of a busted window pane, me trying to think of any other damage caused by wind, he asked me where we were staying and I explained I was in an apartment in the Lower Garden while she was in Alexandria, where her patients had been sent.

"Ah," he said. "A weekend marriage. I've had to do that before. It's hard."

Indeed. As Dr. A said to me later, "Maybe we should just get married. It would make things easier."

Which is as good a reason as any, I suppose, except that it really wouldn't because nothing makes anything easier around here.

Anyway, the sympathetic insurance adjustor did his best by us - they'll pay for our roof damage and window, of course, as well as for replacing and painting the ceiling in my kitchen/dining room, and he even went in for the walls there, too, because you can't really replace a ceiling without messing up the walls, not that I have walls anymore. Unfortunately, no loss of use money.

Loss of use money is meant to cover stuff like travel costs, as well as the rent you're paying while your house in uninhabitable. I've spent the last three months trying to get this from someone, anyone, to no avail. Homeowners won't cover it because what rendered the place uninhabitable was not an "insured event" - in other words, the flood, not the hurricane. FEMA won't cover it because we have flood insurance, and flood insurance won't cover it because loss of use is covered by homeowners.

Follow that? Ah, bureaucracy. Kafka would have loved it.

Catch 8/29 - everyone's run into it in one way or another. Homeowners insurance won't cover it because the flood caused it, flood insurance won't cover it because it was caused by the hurricane, and FEMA won't cover it because you have insurance - it's perfect. Feel free to scrounge up the money somehow to take somebody to court.

I have a thought - since the flood was caused by faulty levees, not the hurricane, levees built by the federal government, I think the head of the federal government should just fork it over to me. Screw all that grant/loan/taxes yadda-yadda-yadda - let's simplify this. I'll shut up if Bush and/or Cheney just peels off the lousy two or three thousand it will take to cover my rent while my house is rebuilt. For me, that's a staggering amount of money, but they're both multi-millionaires; they probably have that much lost in the cushions of their couches.

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