Just like the Queen, I no longer carry money. Liam has assumed the role of central banker and keeper of the petty cash. Consequently, I know the value of everything but the cost of nothing. Three months into our Anatolian adventure Liam felt a fiscal review was due. He prepared the figures with his usual due diligence supported by a complex multi-coloured, multi-linked spreadsheet. After all, he had been the Excel Queen in his previous life. It was all there, spend, income, projections – our financial world laid bare. Liam plugged the laptop into the TV and I knew it was going to be a long night. I uncorked a bottle.
Interest rates continue to slide which is potentially calamitous for us as we rely on investments to keep us afloat. Fortuitously, Liam has moved some of our stash into mutual funds and this gone some way to ameliorate our plight, but we are still eating into our capital. As Liam eloquently demonstrated, our budget deficit is “equivalent to 10% of GDP with only moderate prospects for growth during the next fiscal period.” A career in world economics surely beckons.
Liam did his best to reassure me that the money we don’t have is enough to pay for the lifestyle we can’t afford – just like Greece. And we can’t guilt-trip the Germans. Ah well, we’ll just spend the cash and wait for the pensions to kick in, assuming we still have pensions to kick in given the parlous state of the British structural deficit. We are considering taking in washing as we’re far too old to sell our bodies.
In the end, though, it is the quality of our lives that really counts and the quality is good, very good. It is a minor miracle that after spending three months together all day every day we are still speaking let alone loving, laughing and living. That’s something money can’t buy.