[Please allow me to be materialistic just for this entry.]
I was born poor (not that I am rich now) and I am not really particular with the material things I own. I was only able to finish high school and college through state scholarships, living in the cheapest abodes, and eating only the cheapest foods. Thus, when I started working I vowed to use what I earn to take me to places, let me eat scrumptious expensive meals, pay for dance classes, and go out with friends as often as I want. In short, I squandered all of my salary to non-material things that make me happy.
However, these past months, I began to change my lifestyle. Perhaps it started when I enrolled in a Master’s program, which did not only take up all of my free time, but also all of my financial resources. Thus, I learned how to save. I started to refuse to go to lunch outs, skip taking the cab, walk to my destination if I can, and avoid unnecessary spending. I became financially wiser, started investing, and (although my younger, liberated self would be against this) started buying material things. Despite Mama’s and Papa’s constant urges to buy some tangible things that would serve as a reminder of the fruits of my labor, I only started buying material things pretty recently.
Last year, I got myself an iPhone 4s. And then I started updating my wardrobe. Bought a couple of appliances. And now, I have this:
It is second-hand and I haven’t fully-paid yet. But still, it’s with me now and I am actually using it to write this entry. Sweet! 🙂 I first laid eyes upon this beauty about two years ago. We were practicing for a dance performance for the company when the Head of Marketing, Miss Belle, brought her laptop out so we can use it to play our music. I was awestruck when I saw her Macbook Air. It was so sleek, light, and very mod. It was the loveliest piece of technology I have ever seen in person. Hence, right at that moment, I promised myself that when I become rich I’m going to buy one.
Fast forward to the present. For the past weeks, my humungous Acer laptop had been reminding me that it is nearing its end-of-life. And it irks me a lot because I can’t write school papers, can’t create reports, or read required school readings because it has some electric power issues. Anyway, I have been finding myself doing some schoolwork in my office desktop, or renting in an internet shop just so I can catch up with school. But it is such a hassle.
Luckily, my college brod Tope, who is now based in Singapore, announced that he’s intending to sell his newly-purchased and barely used Macbook Air. TING NING NING NING! I revisited my cashflow schedule for 2013 and tried to accommodate his Mac air’s price tag, i.e. P43,000 in the schedule. It was impossible, I tell you, but I adjusted some cashflow timing. And after much much negotiations with Tope, we had a deal. Immediate downpayment of P25,000 and monthly installments of P1,000 for the next 15 months — total of P40,000 without considering the time value of money. Not bad, right? Considering the total expenses he incurred for the laptop, the upgrades, and some accessories amount to at least P56,000.
On another note, if you were paying attention in the previous paragraph, Tope is in Singapore. And I am here in Manila. Hence, we had a shipping issue. I just want to share the lengths I went through just to make this Mac air dream a reality. We had two options: (1) we will send it via courier which would cost us around SG$40 plus a fixed tax of SG$85, or more than P4,000 – not practical; and (2) have his friend who’s going home to Philippines hand carry the laptop with him – good option, except that his friend will arrive at Clark Airport, which means, I would have to travel 2 hours north to get the parcel, and head back to Manila. The latter option was good enough for me. But while we were mulling over it, I discovered that our company CFO was in Singapore for a conference. What luck! I can just ask him to carry the laptop for us. But he’s the CFO, the boss of my boss’ boss. But it is quite a rare opportunity. So anyway, after much self-debate, I summoned all my strength, swallowed all the principles I have left, and with great chagrin sent our CFO an email asking him the favor. I was shamefully crossing my fingers and waited for what seemed to be forever, telling myself “What have I done?”, “Was it very unprofessional of me?”. “But he is not the usual CFO, he’s kind and he’s down-to-earth, with a rags-to-riches story he proudly tells anyone.”. “Did I cross the line?”. Et cetera, et cetera. Until I got the email response. “Sure, I’m free 9pm tonight. Shangri-la Hotel, Orange Grove.”
I know, I know. It was quite a stunt, what I just did. I’m not entirely proud of it, it’s the CFO for chrissake! But P4,000 is not a small amount. At least not to me. So anyway, the day after he came back to the Philippines, he handed me over the Mac air. 🙂 And as a token of gratitude, I gave him a small trinket for his baby daughter. He seemed to like it. 🙂
YAY! Another dream come true for me. Another material purchase to remind me of the fruits of my hardwork. 🙂
🙂 🙂 🙂
Now, what’s next? An authentic watch perhaps? 🙂 For over a year now I’ve been using this P99 watch (~$2) that I bought from a tiangge. Perhaps I should get a silver-plated metallic watch next. 🙂