domingo, mayo 07, 2006

Precious things.

My salary in Chile is low. It is so low I can’t write it on here because if I did my parents would probably wire money. I have never lived like this before – having to weigh the urgency of every little purchase.

Everything is an investment - even the package of gummy candies I bought on my way home today. They cost slightly over 50 cents US. The bag sits on my desk, in front of me. My first thought is - did I really need that? They were almost the price of a bus ticket! My second though – wow what pretty packaging! I’m fascinated with the package design - the way they drew the fruit, the fonts, the colors. Well, you know, to be honest, the design isn’t anything spectacular. But hey, the fact that this package of candy is now something I own – THAT is spectacular! With my limited purchasing power, everything I buy takes on larger-than-life qualities. The most insignificant of items becomes a precious thing.

You don’t even want to know what I think of $2US bottles of wine. Like gold bars on my shelf, I tells ya!

I’m not sure if I ever mentioned this to anyone, but at the supermarkets here they will ask if you want to pay for your purchase in installments. That’s right! If you can’t pay for your milk and cereal this month, you can pay a little now and a bit more next month! Everywhere I've ever lived before this, people have been lucky enough that they'd only have to consider paying for plasma TVs and furniture in installments – the big stuff. Here, they will ask you if you’d like to pay in installments when you make a purchase of as little as $10US. Well, that’s what you get in a country with US prices and 3rd world salaries. I wonder why salaries never caught up with the price of things here. People tell me stuff wasn’t always this expensive, but can’t explain why things have changed. There must be a reason.

7 Comments:

Anonymous Anónimo said...

Hey, Lauren!

Hope you're really enjoying your life in Chile! I was a bit shocked when I heard dat you left dat Brit Co...but well...so did I (I left already as well)

candy

7:32 a. m.  
Blogger LNR said...

Hi Candy,

From Taiwan, right? You left too? But you just joined! Hope you found something better.

Chile is gorgeous. Unfortunately, I'm not here for much longer.

L

4:58 p. m.  
Anonymous Anónimo said...

Yo!

Nope, from the Hong Kong office.
I joined in 2004.

When will you be heading back to the states??

candy

7:46 a. m.  
Blogger LNR said...

I'll be back in the US by the beginning of June. You still live in Hong Kong? Where do you work now?
L

12:16 a. m.  
Anonymous Anónimo said...

Oops, sorry Lauren, didn't have time to check out your blog lately, and just saw dat you already left your job. Guess you must be busy packing now.
I got another offer in HK, and I'm very happy w/it :o
Then what's your plan after you get back to the US?

8:28 a. m.  
Blogger LNR said...

Glad to hear you like your new job. I'm moving back because I got a job with another publisher Very excited!

Take care,
L

9:31 p. m.  
Anonymous Anónimo said...

really? which publisher is it now? So, will you be in NY instead of your home state?

8:35 a. m.  

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