Figuring out value again

A long long time ago, I wrote a blogpost about exchange rates. I think I was very much in India, working there and trying to save money to travel around the world. And, it wasn’t easy. Let me tell you that. The frustration in me was ‘How come the Australian can pick apples one summer and make enough money to go around the world for 6 months?’. All my arguments seemed to make sense to anyone who didn’t like economics. Here it is. 

Though its more than 6 years since I wrote that, some sentiments stay the same. Maybe not entirely related to this post, but in someways, it is.

Was feeling absolutely sick. Down and out yesterday. And pretty much today. Stepped out with some pocket change to pick the equivalent of Electrol, those dehydration thingies that are meant to replenish salts in your body. Reached the store in the corner to figure out that I fell short by 20 p. If it was back home, I would’ve told the guy – “Arre bhaiya, baad mein de doonga”. But, doesn’t work that way apparently in WH Smith.

Anyway, I should’ve just walked back home and made some nimbu pani. Instead, stopped in the touristy store and bought a postcard and a stamp for that change. Wrote myself a ‘get well soon aparna’ postcard and posted it to myself. Coming to think of it, that just might make me feel mightly swell.

Medicine costs more than Postcards, but postcards make me feel better. Hmmm.

These days, I can’t figure out what costs what. I only know what comes with some value and what doesn’t.

What about other things? The cost of 5 hair cuts in London is equal to an air ticket to Mumbai. I’d rather have a bad hair day regularly at the cost of dealing with my homesickness. My bike cost me 3 months of my sabbatical budget. (It is a beauty, I won’t complain).

I shouldn’t be complaining about London and how expensive it is. It is not that I cannot afford it. It is ‘whether I see value in it’. As I search for a new apartment to move into (yes, the 3rd one in 3 years), I’m discovering value again. I’m sure I’ll find a few parallels I disagree with. But, as long as I choose to live this way, I guess I shouldn’t complain. But wait, I’m not complaining. I’m just questioning ‘value’. What say?

value

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