Sunday, February 08, 2009

My Relationship with Money - II

On one hand I have classified myself as mercenary. On the other hand I always knew that I didn’t want money for itself. Money was important for the freedom it meant. If you don’t have to worry about your basic needs, you can follow your heart. You can’t leave home even if you hate it there, if you don’t have money of your own – whether you are living with your parents or with a partner. I realised I was nothing without it. It was a difficult realisation for a teenage girl to make, but I think I grew up faster because of it.

I went to Delhi to attend bschool and had to give up part-time work. Then came summer internship, and I got into Outlook. We got a sales project, one that involved going into markets in Delhi and talking to storekeepers. It was the height of summer, of course, and we travelled in buses and autos and walked to save money. I survived on chole bhature and namkeen lassi – lots of it to keep dehydration away. We got travel expenses paid, and at the end of it each of us got a cheque for nine thousand rupees. 

That money seemed less important. The experience was worth much more, and I would have done it for free. After that summer in Delhi, I felt I could do anything. 

 When I got my first full-time job, money meant the freedom to live alone. That, and not much more. What with my not-too-ample salary and living alone and my education loan and very high phone bills (due to long-distance relationships, I spent more on phone bills than on rent), there wasn’t much left over for anything else. But living alone gave me a heady ecstatic feeling I wouldn’t have exchanged for designer clothes.

Part III here.

4 comments:

simplypallu said...

"Money was important for the freedom it meant."
I can so identify with that!

Banno said...

Am loving this tale. Should be sent out to all young girls.

dipali said...

Ditto Banno!

Unmana said...

Pallu: That still holds true, does it not?

Banno: Thank you! I take it you're going to make Dhanno read it. ;-) I hope she doesn't hate me for it.

Dipali: Thank you too. Two more installments coming up.