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Thursday, December 23, 2010


As most of us struggle with the last bit of our penny and patiently wait for the New Year which is round the corner; we are also counting days when we would get our salary.

Personally, the news of the onion’s price did not affect me much more than a story idea. Reason: I do not have to worry about buying it because I live with my parents and they take care of it. But then today I went around talking to shopkeepers and buyers for my story (with our intern Yeshey) and realized how much difference it makes.

We stopped at few vegetable vendors and spoke to them. The story they pondered on to us were so very realistic and so true. Although we live in a small society and pursue the modals of Gross National Happiness, an inflation incident thousands of miles away from our land, impacts lives of hundreds back home.

I never realized that if the price of the onion goes up, the cost of momos would go up. This I realized after I stood to pay at one of my favorite eatery (Zombala). One among the similar looking girl told me that they raised the price to Nu 40(from 35) owing the onion price.

Ahhhh…why didn’t I even think about it? See, it directly or indirectly affects me.

The other day, we had guests for dinner and then I was narrating them about the hike and my uncle (a jolly old man) said, “Do not offer me raw onions with food then,” while my mother continued, “No worries” and dad added, “Last week I bought it for Nu 45 a Kilo, If I had known I would have bought more.”

And I felt it doesn’t affect me!!!

With the hike, I came across many interesting lines from people whose living depended on the tear shedding delicacy. Almost all curries mom cooks would be tasteless without it.

Interesting comments: “The inflation is good enough to bring down a government in India.”

" I finished the last onion in the house yesterday and now I will have to survive without onions for weeks coz they are suddenly too damn expensive!"- Mahim

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Something very interesting happened to me yesterday. And I think it is very important for me write this down and remember.

It would not be easy for me to forget as well. The reason-21st of December is my younger brother’s birthday and that was why it happened.

Although I wanted to buy him a gift, but as always I was broke. Luckily I had Nu 500 in my ATM and I was thinking that I would go to Swiss bakery and buy him cakes-(It could not have been whole anyways). And as I was packing to go home, my mom calls and say- “Bring refine oil and sugar” what do I do now?

If I tell her I do not have enough money to buy the 5 litre refine oil and the sugar, It would be my bad. I was tensed. However I managed to say, “I was not carrying my ATM, and mom insisted that I should buy a one litre jar. Hmmm…

And I needed to buy a voucher as well!!

As I climbed down my office stairs, I realized that Swiss Bakery is closed on Tuesday’s but no matter what I need to buy some pastries. Till I reached the PNB ATM, I was trying to figure out if the money would be sufficient.

With the last of my salary, as I crossed the zebra crossing towards the Plums CafĂ©, I got an idea. I walked in the bakery at the edge and saw a perfect birthday cake. I asked, “Azim, How much is it?

The reply came, “500.”

As I stood there confused, pressing the notes thinking hard if I should buy it or get scolding back home. For a moment, I wished I had a genie.

Then I used a bit of Marwari ( or say Lamsang) inside me. I decided to take six pieces of pastries instead (We were 5 at home so why waste and two pieces of black forest would make my brother happy).

Stingy me, I never felt so bad being broke.

Next, I walked into a grocery and bought the oil and the sugar with a hundred and some changes left. (This is good, I thought to myself).

As I walked past strangers carrying my load and my mini laptop bag over my shoulders, I thought, “Shame on you.” “Why can’t you save? I always felt, it was okay to be broke by the first week of the month but with this experience,

I, Saraswati Sundas genuinely feel that it is about time, I do some serious thinking about how to manage money.

P: S –Guys, I did promise a gift for my brother, once I get my salary J