Recap for you☺
Part 2 of 5
This is funny now when we talk about it at home but when it happened it was real, there was so much tension in the house and all kinds of emotions flying around. Let me tell you all about it.
Ok so as I have said I was in my 10nth grade and had moved back with my parents, it was Dec 2008, schools were closed and I was having a good time at home watching so much TV. My parents then just decided they were going to visit my grandparents and we’re going to leave me and my little brother at home. It came as a shock, I really thought we were going to spend Christmas together as a family.
Anyway, they told me they were going for Christmas and they will be back in time for the New Year celebrations. They could not take us with because there wasn’t enough money. They gave me R200 for bread and stuff and they left. Well, I was home alone with my brother, he was at that stage where he ate like 8 slices of bread for breakfast and then 4 more 2 hours later as a snack, lol I’m exaggerating but you get the picture. I wasn’t cooking, just buying bread and watching loads of TV. My brother would complain and I would say “Cook if you don’t want to eat bread, what have you done for me to deserve my cooking?, I was outright mean, like that was our relationship, always dissing each other, throwing shade and actually hurting each other sometimes; with words and with fists and any other weapon that was close by.
Ok so the money was finished in like 4 days, coz I was also buying snacks when I got bread. That day one of my mom’s friends came to check up on us, she opened the fridge and there was an empty carton of milk (yeah my brother did that), 2 rotten tomatoes, margarine, an empty casserole of the food mom had cooked the day she left, a carrot, mayonnaise and containers of salad dressing. She asked me if we still had money for food and I said “mom only left us R200, it is finished, but they said they will be coming back tomorrow or the day after that, we should be fine’. She looks deep into my face like the way prophets look at you when they want to penetrate into your soul and “prophesy”.
It was weird and then she said, “Oh, they haven’t told you guys”, ‘tell us what?’ I reply. “Well, they have extended their stay, they will be back in the New Year”. “Oh, I didn’t know that”. That lady was so disturbed, I thought she was going to give me money but no, she, later on, that same day sent her son with a loaf of bread, milk, cheese, and polony, she apparently also called my mom.
That evening I received a call from my parents, my mom said “I heard you don’t have money anymore, why didn’t you tell us? “Well, it didn’t matter coz I thought you would be here tomorrow, why didn’t you tell us? My mom was pissed, she just said “take my bedroom keys in the 2nd drawer on the TV cabinet, there is money in the wardrobe, underneath my clothes’.
Growing up in an African home, you know that your mom will have money that everyone knows about ‘when that money is finished, then you can’t ask for anything anymore, you will just get a “look at my bank balance, I don’t have any more money for your silly demands. Then there is the second pocket which she keeps the money to buy groceries for that week before payday, you know just basic stuff. Everyone also knows about that pocket but no one can ever talk about it because there will be hell to pay. There is also the 3rd pocket which is the emergency pocket, this one is purely for emergencies when someone is sick, dead or something. The fourth pocket was a temporary one, it only existed in Dec, and this was the January bills pocket. This pocket was very crucial because it determined the quality of life for the month of January and most times even February.
My mom taught me to save, monthly bills are not a surprise! Sometimes we did not have enough but it was not because she couldn’t save, there was just no money. But through it all, I learnt the importance of being prepared and planning ahead.
I had never seen so much money in one place, I was even scared to touch it, but when I did touch it hehe🤣🤣🤣
Did you have this kind of savings growing up, do you have it now as an adult? How do you save money and make sure that all your bills are covered?