“There is an expiration date on how long you can blame your parents”
These are the words of J.K. Rowling which couln’t be put any better. This is a quote from her 2008 Harvard commencement speech. And by the way, if you havent seen it, well, you have missed one of the most inspiring speeches. Now, what I aim to expand on here and how this opening quote relates to it may seem a bit queer, but you will see the fog clearing, hopefully, at the end!
Years swish by, as Chronos wields his scythe upon us. There is pressure. Money runs this world. Money runs it all. You do not acknowledge this mad race untill you enter the field yourself. You can splurge your pocketmoney, but you won’t spend your earned money! Life teaches you that. It is the best teacher afterall. I have been on my internship, expectedly an unpaid one, in a city that is not my own. Initially, I “splurged” like I was Ambani’s heir. Pizza, clothes, brews, pubs, you name it! I went by my instincts. I had a healthy account balance! It was after my 20th day after arriving when I realised I had spent 70% of my allowance and was left with Rs 3000 to spend for the next 40 days. It was then when it dawned upon me how profligate I had been these days.
I cannot simply splurge the money my father had earned working so hard. Not that he was against it, he rather encouraged me to spend as much as I want.
Kharch karle yaar, tera baap kis liye kama raha hai! Mere baap ke paas nahi tha, par tere baap ke paas hai. Tension mat le!
Loosely translated, “Spend the damn money, you dont worry about it. Why on earth is your father earning! My father did not have enough money so I couldnt spend it, but your father has it, Go on!”. And mind you, this was without even a tiny bit of sarcasm. He is my best friend. Stern when required, friendly when needed. He always told me to spend the money as and when “required” but not waste it on useless items. But now as I was growing old, I had to look into the economic aspect as well. I had to be frugal. I decided, I shall now be surviving on bare minimum for the remaining duration of my stay in this city. And I have gone lengths and breadths to save even Rs 5 at times. It may seem absurd to most of you, but try being the spendthrift you are today, when you earn yourself.
I discarded the auto and took up local bus, saving good Rs 40 daily. Sometimes I walk back home, 5 kms, to save even those Rs 15 on the bus! Dining out has been almost non existant now. If I remember correctly, I have since been just once to McDonald’s for a McAloo Tiki! I also maintain a regular account of my daily spending. And I am proud to still have Rs 2000 left for the remaining 20 days! Some of you might want to point out that this isnt “being frugal” but rather a miser! If you look up the entire period of my stay here, I am still a spendthrift on average! You have to balance it out. So until I start earning, I will be this way, or so I have planned. My father says
Everyone is a spendthirft on their parents’ money. Dont flaunt it. Be able to be the same on your own money and you would truly be successful if you can continue to be so after getting married!