Contrary to popular perception, I am not the kind to run into stores showering notes on bemused salespeople in the manner of Michael Jackson in his pre bankruptcy days. No sirree, I start showering notes before I enter the store, and once in I run amok with credit card at hand, and am sensible enough to buy strips of Disprin to keep in my handbag for use when the bill does come in at the end of the month.
Seriously though, I do not buy when not on discount or sale. No. That is a rule I havent broken even when I have to be physically dragged away from a window display of wooden heeled wedges with floral canvas tops which were just yelling my name loud enough for the entire mall to ask for ear plugs.
And now in these recessionary times, what is a shopaholic like me to do.
What else, but go shopping. The shopping of the window variety. Where one hangs outside stores and peers in with nose pressed against the glass until the security men come wielding nasty batons and asking us to stop making out with the sheet of glass.
I find it is as satisfying as throwing my cash around in purposeless heaps and reaching home with stuff that looked wonderful in the store but which shrank in the transit time between the store shelf and the car journey back home, or morphed into something awful ugly that one would be seen wearing/carrying unless a very nasty mean looking and loaded gun was held against one’s temple, and even then is so ugly and terrible that one cannot even pull out birthday lists of dear friends and look for the closest upcoming birthday in the fond thrifty hope of palming it off to the hapless BFF.
The child has no clue of the recession and has no such qualms and as a consequence one spends on him. In the past week, he has added to his overflowing basket, a batman car, a superman car, a superheroes colour kit, a Power Ranger SPD costume. But he has been a very good boy. Especially at the dentist. Where he has been an excellent boy. And has actually sat without needing a straitjacket to be held to the chair. Oh, that was mamma. Who needed two nurses to hold her down during a routine cleaning. And didnt have anyone to get her a toy for being a good girl.
Anyway, this post is about the recession and the fact that there is definitely lesser money floating around therefore one has to pull up one’s metaphoric socks or pull ups or adult diapers depending on which stage of life one is in, although seeing the EMIs we owe our fillings to, might necessitate me wearing an adult diaper but thats another issue.
Therefore, here, are the cost cutting provisions on at the house.
No more dinners out. We order in. And lounge around and speak posh, and insist the child sits and behaves at the table and keeps his elbows off, and doesnt run around. And the good thing is he cant run to other tables and beg for food, so this option might actually be a keeper.
No more fancy schmancy holidays. The only fancy schmancy holidays we have had were pre becoming parents, so now we find places we can drive down to, simple hotels with minimal frills, and dont do the shopping for gifts to give on our return. Because of course, we’re in a recession.
We actually switch the lights off every room when we leave the room. Considering we are a family of four adults and one child who is running between all the rooms regardless of whether the lights are one or off, this can get pretty terrifying. The child will run into a room which was until a second ago manned with personnel and lit bright and then holler for help to switch on said light, as switches are all at child proof levels, read, at a level that just about manage to make it with the help of the small footstool for this adult. Just yesterday we received the monthly electricity bill, and after the smelling salts had been passed round for those passed out to be revived, a round table conference was summoned and it was decided that we would now live in candlelight. More romantic too. And the child could get his cheap thrills by going around blowing them out.
We are actually seriously recycling old clothes and bottles and junk. The junk and raddi gets sold now by us. Earlier we just passed it on to the maids, who are now sulking when they see the pile loads being loaded into the back of the car, because they’ve just lost out on their weekend party. Seriously though, we’re getting thrifty and that is a good sign. Because we really needed a good hard kick in our pants to be so.
We are taking public transport more often. Make that, I am. If it is just me who needs to be travelling and not required to arrive at destination looking like a glamazon, I prefer hopping into auto rickshaws. Quicker, and am not signing charge slips at petrol pumps every second day.
I have dug out clothes I’d stored in the loft to be given away and giving them a fresh lease of life through alterations and such like to make them usable at least at home. The husband hasnt been clothes shopping in a while, which is a clear economic indicator better than any sensex index findex thing.
The geysers are left on for shorter durations, and we’re making do with limited hot water.
There is spending money that is limited to groceries and household provisions with nothing spare to indulge oneself on anything. Friends are getting the sack. Business is at a standstill. Prices are at an all time high.
Yup, its killing. I’m even surviving on just one face cream. And no new shoes. And budget haircuts. And no facials at fancy salons. Am slapping on scrubs and homemade masks on my own and lying down on the bed imagining cool hands working on my skin, kneading it into malleable smoothness. Any of you painting on stockings as yet?
Seriously though, how bad is it for you?