Thursday, April 14, 2005

Taxes are due in a few days. I filed mine successfully yesterday evening, a few days under the wire, completing everything and also filing via the computer for the third consecutive year. For someone like me who lives abroad, it's incredibly convenient. The process still amazes me even though it's not my idea of fun.

I probably would have forgotten about it if I hadn't received dozens of messages, which, up until Monday, were resting dormant and unopened in my e-mail inbox. I was surprised that none of my coworkers had mentioned the coming deadline, but I'm less and less surprised at the disinterest (disawareness?) of other people. Their disinterest in not only the world and its happenings but also in me. There are more inspiring things to talk about than taxes.

After asking one of my coworkers if she knew that our taxes were due this week, she told me that she wasn't worried about it and that she would just file later, if ever. Seems like that would be more of a hassle, but then I don't always know what's best.

Fortunately, with the pittance I make in Beijing, I'm not in jeopardy of owing any money to the Motherland or my native California and for that I'm thankful. Vile responsibility that it is, tax time always makes me think about my life in a very positive way, and not simply about the economic status. It forces me to reflect, at least, on the previous year's happenings, which feel so far away now. I was still working in Japan one year ago!

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