About Me

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Douglas, Alaska, United States
I have lived in Alaska since 1978, having come to Juneau as a Jesuit Volunteer. I fell in love with Alaska and now live on Douglas Island with my husband and two dogs.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Oil, That Is...Black Gold. Texas (I Mean, Alaska) Tea

I live in Alaska - one of the richest oil producing states in the Union.

We heat with oil in our house.

Every time the oil company (Taku Oil Sales), fills our tank, it costs between $800 - $1000.

So, we make monthly payments to Taku Oil Sales, because we can't afford to drop that much money at one time.

The problem is, the Taku Oil Sales won't deliver oil if you are carrying a balance.  I understand they have to pay for the oil they sell, and pay their employees, etc.  I understand all that.

However, we are out of oil.

If we lived in Florida or Southern California or Arizona, this wouldn't necessarily be a problem.  But, like I said, we live in Alaska.

The days are getting cooler.  The nights are getting colder.  The leaves are falling from the trees.

We are bundling up during the day and making fires in the woodstove at night.

I called the oil company to tell them we are out of oil.  They said to pony up the rest of our balance (almost $1500), or they won't fill our tank.

So, while our plan was to pay down our credit cards to eventually be debt free (ha!), I now have to cobble together enough to pay the %*&@ bill with the cards so they will come and fill our tank, which will incur another charge of almost $1000.

I hate stressing about money.  We will get our Permanent Fund Dividends in October (we plan to do major car repairs with that money), and also royalties from Charles' book (yay!), but the oil company can't wait for payment until October, and we can't wait until October for oil.


Black Gold, indeed.

Alaska Oil Pipeline


  1. Oh gosh, it's always something to mess up the budgeting! Energy costs are certainly high for you up there because you have to use so much of it. The good news, though, is that you get the dividends from Alaska by virtue of the oil production, and other states doesn't provide any such payments to its citizens.

    Until our country gets more self-sufficient for energy needs, it's going to only get worse with energy prices, I'm afraid. Coal-fired power plants are getting shut down left and right here in the lower 48 because of every-increasing environmental regulations. And electric costs are soaring as a result. There is also going to be a danger in the next couple of years of having rolling blackouts because there will not be enough reserves for peak power needs. I'm sure not a big fan of the current EPA!

    I do hope that this is just a temporary setback for you and that you can get back on track quickly for achieving a debt-free status! Living debt free is a wonderful feeling, so it is worth the effort! Keep on plugging, sweetie!

  2. I remember when I was young with little ones and a oil guzzling furnace. We never had enough money to even fill the tank and would have to pay a higher amount per gallon because of that.

    I do hope it doesn't get too cold before you get the money together...Thankfully you have your woodstove, what a lifesaver. xo

  3. I'm sorry that this has happened... I get it too, but I wish that they could just give you some oil for now. Hang in there. And I am trying to get my mind around needing heat in early September!

  4. Thank you for stopping by! Goodness, I had no idea Alaska heated with only oil, of course that makes sense. I hope you can get it filled before the snow falls, I will send some warm Florida air along with this email


    1. Carol - some folks use electric heat, wood stoves, etc to heat their houses, we just happen to have an oil furnace! Thanks for stopping by!


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