Wednesday, April 4, 2012

French Bank Account

France is an odd place. Especially to a 23-year-old who's never been out of the Midwest, i.e., me when I took a job there teaching English. I was an employee of the French government and had to open a bank account to get paid. I brought a friend along to translate and getting the account setup went fine, but closing it was another matter. I tried to do it on my last day in the country at a local branch of the huge national bank. The teller told me I'd need to go back to the bank I'd opened the account (hours away) and setup and appointment for next week to talk about closing the account. I went outside with by debit card and removed all the money in my bank account in one transaction, then took the card back in and told them they could keep the 5 Euros left in it. I handed her my card and left. It's been ages since I've been back to France, but I image three possibilities for this account: 1. The interest has compounded over and over, and now I have nearly 10 Euros in the account. 2. I didn't meet the minimum balance requirement and have been getting fined 2 Euros a day. 3. The person at the bank stole my identity and took out loans all over town and now they're living in my apartment building.

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