This is a partly hypothetical and partly actual conversation. Not naming the people, area, location, – does not matter.
It was one of the not very expensive kinda hotels and it was empty. A few over grown kids were talking about their parents….
The first girl said: My dad will not wear a shirt costing more than Rs. 1500. I just cannot understand this. I am paying for it from my pocket out of my hard earned money – I have no clue why he will not.
All of them laughed and I am sure they were NOT SURPRISED at all. And the second girl chipped in to say ‘It is not as though your dad cannot afford it. After all he has 2 earning kids, and apart from a house he and his wife have a pension of Rs. 40,000 per month!
Another guy chipped in and said: ‘I offered to take my dad to XXXXXXXXX for lunch and he was aghast. He said I will not eat out in a place that costs Rs. 2500 for a meal.
And do not forget he retired as a Vee Pee in a bank with a salary in excess of Rs. 40 Lakhs, it is not as if he has not gone to such places, but does not want to spend his money (or even my money) on a a meal..If the 4 of us had gone it would have cost us Rs. 12,000 including taxes and one drink each.
The cheapstake that he is he suggested going to his cheap club.
Again a round of laughter.
I have no clue how to react to such a situation. I do not know these kids, but I am sure there are many fathers and mothers who are not comfortable spending Rs. 2000 on a shirt or Rs. 12000 on a dinner for four. Make no mistake, these are millionaires. They are about 60 years of age. They have seen hard times and have seen fantastic cash flows at the end of their careers. It is not as though they cannot afford it.
MAKE NO MISTAKE – If you have financially successful people around you do not laugh at them. Learn from them. Frugality by choice is worth celebrating. Know how your parents became millionaires. Know why a Gujju owning a Merc does not hesitate taking a train. Know that eating out in a fancy restaurant REGULARLY is actually delaying your financial freedom. I fancy my early retirement far, far more than a fancy restaurant or a fancy holiday.
Personally I am not comfortable spending Rs. 3000 on a meal. It is just not me.
Have I eaten at places which cost that kinda money? The answer is yes, and bluntly it was somebody else paying. A few times when the business demanded it, I have had to eat at such places paying for it – surely it was tax deductible, but it was a business necessity.
Will I eat out at a place which costs Rs. 3k for a meal? I do doubt it -but I do not have an inkling of the prices at some of the expensive restaurants which I used to visit in the past so I am not commenting.
I know of people with a net worth of Rs. 10 crores who will find it difficult to sign a cheque of Rs. 1 million to go on a world tour. They may be able to buy a house worth Rs. 2 crores by selling off of some shares, but spend they may not!
Personal finance is personal. Your parent, you and your children can have a dramatically different attitude towards money.
I know how much a friend cried while bailing his son-in-law out of financial trouble. His net worth was about Rs. 40 crores and his son in law had lost Rs. 3.5 crores in the share market. The son-in-law’s father had a net worth of Rs. 1 crore (yes it was a love marriage!).
It is not easy to sign an expense cheque for many people whom I know. Sadly a lot of this money will be inherited by people who will not bat an eyelid before they buy a shoe for Rs. 12,000 with the money of a man who would NEVER have bought a shoe costing more than Rs. 1200.
That is life. Make sure your money is used for a good cause. In life as in death.
Remember YOU can covenant that.
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