The first time my mom gave me money was in Kindergarten 1. My sister, the more responsible one being in Kindergarten 2, was given a five-peso bill (yes, that’s how long ago it was, five pesos still wasn’t reduced to meager coinage) for the two of us to share. The instructions were to split the fiver 50-50. My sister obeyed her and once we were in school, she ripped the bill right in the middle. From 10 pieces of candy to none. I went hungry that morning.
A year later, mommy decided to test our business sense by making us bring lollipops to school to see if we could sell them. My sister sold hers all in one day whereas I went home carrying most of my merchandise and a wad of toy paper bills. Without so much as a haggle, I had agreed to barter my lollipops for toys.
A few weeks ago, I revealed my salary to my Canadian cousin. After computing the math, he was shocked to realize how meager it was compared Canada’s standards while here, it’s enough for a modest lifestyle (hey, I’m only starting!). I was much happier with my paper money, than it’s smellier, apparently much more valuable counterpart by the way.
It’s not uncommon to hear people (rich or poor) comment on how little a hundred pesos is–and how it’s just barya in today’s prices. I’m swimming against the tide here but my tummy still does back flips every time I see a lone hundred-peso bill hidden inside the folds of wallet (even if it’s the only money there). I can buy 10 bags of junk food which can keep me full for three whole days. I can survive with a 30-peso sandwich with 70-pesos left for my cab fare. How we see money’s worth is only a matter of our lifestyle choices.
Yesterday I got my first paycheck (actually it was deposited into a payroll bank account but paycheck sounds all grown-up-and-working-girly) from being a full-time employee. This isn’t the first time I got paid for working, but those checks seem like a distant memory–plus, I was a minor at that time so they were made out to my OLDer sister. I bought a nice dress for my mom before I got anything else, and before I even redeposited it in my main account. I’ve never been known to budget, although I’ve heard how important that is, but no matter how much moo I got in my wallet, I can make do. It’s not how much money you have, but what you value and what you do with it.
This was an unfinished post yesterday, and now that I finished it, I totally forgot my point hahaha.