Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Dirt Poor Vs Stinking Rich

Today, I was out and about doing my shopping and found myself having a great conversation with Leigh in 'Make-it Fabrics' at Logan Central about how happy or sad people are when it comes to money.  He said that the more money people have, the more they want; and the poorer people are, the less greedy they tend to be.  I totally agree with him.
Since I lost my full-time job at RACQ about 15 years ago, it took me a long time to adjust to not having any money.  I went from having a job, lots of money and being able to afford pretty much anything I looked at, to me living on only $900 per fortnight (to date) to cover my food, rent, bills and travel expenses.  This doesn't include how much I put away into my savings accounts for other things I wish to save for - which is a lot for somebody on a pension/welfare - but I do live below the Poverty Line when it comes to the averages; but you wouldn't think it by the way I eat.
I make sure I eat well.  Forget about where I need to go out socially; so long I have the right food in the fridge and pantry, I'll always have my health.  And this is the most important thing which will make me happy.  I don't care if I'm dirt poor... so long I can sit back, read a good book, listen to a vinyl on my stereo system and sleep in a bed a bed under a roof at night I'm happy.  So what if I live in one of the poorest areas of Brisbane and Logan City?  So what if I don't have the most up-to-date fashions or a car?  It's not money that will make me happy, it's family, friends and so long I can pay my bills with what little money I've been allowed to have by the Australian Government that does.  It's the little things that bring me the most joy.  It's the song of my budgie; and her love, her cuddles, her funny moments and little kisses on my nose that I find joy in.  It's the moment when I know I have finished a painting to best of my abilities - and the last 3 - 4 months of sitting in front of the same painting has really paid off - that brings me happiness.  It's knowing that when I take a card off the K-Mart Wishing Tree each year, I can make another person's life that little bit better because - even though I'm dirt poor, just like them - I can help them believe there's somebody out there who cares enough to give of themselves.
If I was ever in the position where I had all the riches beyond my wildest imaginings, I really wouldn't know what to do with it.  Besides publishing my books, improving my environment a thousand-fold and traveling a little, I'd probably end up investing a good lot of it and living off the interest because that's how I've been brought up:  you don't spend it all, you save it like crazy because it might all vanish on you in a minute.  
Even though I'm from an Upper-Middle Class background, I'm doing my best to be who I am.  I'm alone, and yet not lonely.  I have no money, and yet I'm rich in my own way.  Life hasn't always been great to me, and yet I've had a great life in other ways.  So, where do you stand on this scale?  Are you stinking rich or dirt poor; or are you somewhere in the middle (there's nothing wrong with being there either)?  And how do you feel about the separation of the classes being this way?  Until my next post, take care, keep safe and warm and remember, I'm always here.

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