Weekly Thoughts 28 February 2014

If you maintain a travel log book for tax purposes, then today is the day that you need to record your closing mileage for the tax year. What I do is take a photo of my speedometer with my cell phone. Then I can find it when I am ready to write it down.

I had a variety of work related conversations this week. One was a difficult and unproductive meeting in my office with an insurance franchise owner – arriving in his new Porsche – who didn’t, or wouldn’t, understand why I won’t use their insurance products for client investment monies. This meeting actually left me feeling rather disturbed.

Then another conversation was a chat on the phone with a retired client around her annual income review. She doesn’t receive these weekly emails as she doesn’t own a computer. Her investment is very small and she receives just R800 a month from it. I got more personal with her this year than in the past and asked her what else she was living on. She said that she had applied for and received a state pension as well, of R1260pm, making her income a total of R2060pm. I thought she wasn’t finished so I said, “and what else?” To which she said “no that’s all”.

I asked if her children give her any money and she said no, but sometimes they bring her food. I asked of her expenses. She lives in a retirement village of the type where residents pay a percentage of income for rent, which for her is R309pm. Then she pays electricity and water after that and lives on the rest. She has no car and no medical aid. But the thing that struck me was that she was cheerful and refused to complain. She said that she was fine and doesn’t need a lot in life. This conversation was the converse of the one above. This one left me speechless and inspired.

It’s funny how different things can be in life.