Arrgh! I am kicking myself. Retrograding Mercury is currently streaking through my second house, the house of personal resources and money, and wiping his snot on the furniture!

Just got a letter today having incurred a £30 direct debit penalty for a £70 credit card payment. On the credit card end, they penalised me £12 + a late fee of £4 for the payment being late.

Here’s where the tricksy bit comes in. It wasn’t that I’d forgotten to pay. I had already transferred money into the outgoing account – but as the transfer window is three days (if you’re lucky) and their computers work – a miss by less than a day incurred a £46 penalty on a £70 payment. I did effect the transfer three days ahead, but depending on where the cut-off point is with the different banks, the payment bounced by a margin of hours. I never miss a payment. But I should have been extra careful this time. Grr.

Robert Wilkinson has this to say in his wonderful book, A New Look at Mercury Retrograde, about Mercury retrograde in the Second House:

There may be misunderstandings about money. (60)


But seriously, I try and take every Merc rx mishap as a lesson. Wilkinson articulates it better than I can, so I’ll borrow his words:

This is a time of reflecting on old values. Look at what you have and how you use it. Old ways of making money may return, or you may get new insights into the worth of your assets. There may be misunderstandings about money. You may use the written or spoken word to create an alternate source of income, or may share your value system with others. See the inner resources that you draw on that sustain your self-image in different ways. This is a time to review old ideas about stability, and update the information. See the material objects you value in terms of their symbolic meaning and worth. (60)

Part of me thinks I should call both banks and protest, but another part of me is exhausted already. It is after all ‘just’ money (forgive the cliche), and money, to me, is energy more than a physical substance. When money changes hands, it’s an energy transfer. I’m not sure I want to expend more energy chasing energy that’s already lost. I might write the £46 off as the price of my stupidity and carelessness — though technically it wasn’t but no one else will care.

As I keep repeating in this blog, Mercury retrograde (for me anyway) isn’t about real damage as it is about its nuisance, and sardonic, value. You know what Wilkinson says above about returning to old ways of making money? Ironically, I had completed two freelance gigs in the past couple of months (I haven’t freelanced in about three years) and their payments are — you guessed it — late.

Pah! is all I can say.

Image: Wallet with Euros. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Robert Wilkinson (1997) A New Look at Mercury Retrograde. York Beach, Maine: Samuel Weiser.