2021 Grateful 20: The price of wood and sparkling wine

I enjoy a good wallow. I’m prone to bouts of melancholy. For me, paranoia is the vanguard of depression. Some days it’s difficult to get motivated, particularly when I’m hit with one thing after another, each on their own eminently doable, but together they seem too much.

Inflation in Hungary is running high. The price of wood, as an example, went from 160k per cubic metre to 250k in a matter of weeks. Add to that the price of glass, rubber, steel, concrete – anything to do with building. It’s madness. When you’ve passed the point of no return in a renovation project, the price of wood and such becomes all-consuming.

The rational side of me knows that it’ll be fine. The money will come. We’ll get it done. It might take twice as long and cost three times as much as originally planned, but one of these years, we’ll be done.

Perhaps more concerning is the price of food. I’m not alone in seeing a 30% increase in my grocery bill without the corresponding increase in volume. It’s everything in general and nothing in particular – a few hundred forints here and there that all add up. On a rare visit to Tesco, I saw that the bottle of sparkling wine I’ve been known to buy has gone up not 30% but 60%.

And yes, I know that complaining about it won’t suddenly reverse inflation, moaning about it won’t magic lower prices. It is what it is. I need to find a way to stop dwelling on it.

On the month’s mind of an old schoolmate, I figured he might have had something to say so I dug through old posts and came up with this:
 I woke up feeling sorry for myself and realised within a couple of hours that it was not a pat on the back I needed ( get it, pat on the back) ( ah shut up ) sorry. But a kick in the arse. People on chat were wishing one another the very best for 2014 and I came on as the grinch saying that it was going to be a difficult year, I wasn’t looking forward to it, etc. Being self-employed is not easy, the bills, taxman, vat man and bank manager seem to have me on speed dial and it seems the older I get the more difficult it becomes. The very nice people on chat became all concerned for me and the mad thing is I did not even realise I was being grinch-like. I got a call which cheered me up no end and some pms (ffs, that looks all wrong – it was meant to be short for private messages) ha. Anyway, the upshot of it guys is that it seems that none of our lives is utopian. We all have challenges. We all have made mistakes, done things that at the time were well-intentioned but have come unstuck for one reason or another. Mary Murphy’s blog today was just so good that I read it three times in an hour and I have to say what seemed like a mountain to me has turned out in the greater scheme of things to be merely a molehill. To the person who I had a long chat with this morning, as I said to you, you humbled me and I thank you. I felt the better for it. Have a great night and may 2014 be the best year “eva”.
That he was sending me to something I’d written in 2013, something I needed to read again, wasn’t lost on me. I’m grateful for the reminder.

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2 Responses

  1. Sorry to learn that you’ve lost an old friend . . . and thank you for the non-C of E expression.

  2. Building material costs……the bane of my life at the moment. At least you have confirmed that it really is international. The suggestion is that they will fall back once the problems caused by covid are solved………I wouldn’t hold your breath.

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