Colombo socialites are astir with the news of the proposed cuts in imports, especially with many of the well to do in Colombo who are now used to enjoying crème fraiche, varieties of cheeses, air dried meats and similar luxury food items. With no quinoa in the market their diet will go out of the window, it seems. We must not forget the cosmetic products, especially the exorbitantly priced anti-ageing creams that are purchased by the kilo. There exists a number of people who manage to still import these products and sell them at a premium price. The buyers, however, are not that many since their incomes have collapsed or they are now living on a budget where imported items are at the bottom of the list of requirements.
All of this is bringing on depression and causing psychological issues among this segment of people. Apartments that were purchased as investments and subsequently leased at sky-high prices quoted in US$s are now empty with no takers, which is leading many to go bonkers because their visits to the salon and boom-time frivolities have come to a halt.
I believe that it is a great lesson for all of us who have this la di da attitude, bragging till our ears have caught AOM, where everything is taken for granted and thinking that life is all about luxury items.
Last week I had a hilarious evening with dear friends at sundown. Thelma had a fancy job and travelled around the world on premier class travel on both work and holidays had her dream realized when she purchased her very posh Rimowa suitcases and bags as she was always conscious of curling her lip at the odd looking bags that arrived in a baggage carousel. Thelma is since retired and now lives on a pension. As such, she has decided to cut down on her expenses and has decided that her next overseas trip she will do will be on cattle class. She is aware that this will be all new to her and cause her some shocks. However, she has learned that according to the new travel rules the seat next to her will be empty and will go online and book a bulkhead seat so that she could feel that she is travelling the distance in a premier seat. With the fear of no more fine alcohol coming into the country she has switched her daily drinks to good old local cocktails and mung dhal as bites. I was amazed and quite happy to see that she seems to be adjusting to the new normal to come or at least got into the swing of things instead of moaning about it. Nicky and the hostess were not bothered what their luggage brand was or on which seat they sat on as long as they reached their destination. As for Cinders, the fourth guest, whose ambition is to be appointed to the Director Board of the conglomerates in town, confessed that when she is out and about in town with her husband, that he fears if she were to come across an NWSDB or CEB sign board she would want to get on to them too. It certainly was a wonderful and entertaining evening.
Frequent travellers are having panic attacks because taking out or buying of foreign exchange has become a problem. The fear that they may not be able to use their credit cards overseas is causing further depression amongst our travellers. For those of us who lived through the Sirimavo regime of austerity, we are quite used to living in these conditions. I believe that it is a great lesson for all of us who have this la di da attitude, bragging till our ears have caught AOM, where everything is taken for granted and thinking that life is all about luxury items. This will be the ideal time as well as a challenge for our local entrepreneurs to have their products shine and be recognized. Many more creative minds should come forth and churn out some great products, be it food, clothing or whatever our other daily needs are.