“Sister, I am your dearest brother.” “Okay, what do you want?”
I am sure this would have been the standard conversation starter for many who have their close siblings in the United States of America. For all we know, the latest technological inventions of the world hit the US markets first before its launch in India. Not only that, they have also been traditionally placed at an comparatively attractive and lower price range.
One gets a good value for money by buying a product that is both technologically advanced and as well as cheaper. Indeed that has been my mantra for quite some time now and as a consequence, I have been at the receiving end of my sister’s several ‘loving gifts’. I mockingly tell my friends that they should invest in sending their elder siblings to the US and wait for the returns! I specifically mean the elders because they have the responsibility to satisfy their younger bros and sisters.
For the younger population of our increasingly affluent families, it is the question of which gadget every year if not every six months! Who doesn’t love to flaunt the latest iPhone or for that matter any fancy electronic toy and earn a few extra admirers. Oh, all the fame and name that comes with owning a product that is yet to see the day of light in our country. Agreed, it is only a matter of time before others catch up but then you just don’t wait to replace your ‘only 6 month old product’, do you?
But wait, before you think of calling your brother or sister, you would do well to switch on the news channels or read a newspaper. Now why would you do that? You will, because the rupee has been steadily rising against the US dollar and that might just dampen all your storied dreams of buying the latest toy on offer. With the rupee falling to record low of 59 to a dollar, it is increasingly impossible to do the usual cost benefit analysis. Last night I checked with the Apple store (US) for the price of a Mac and I was left stunned to see that there was not much of a difference in buying it here in India compared to purchasing in the US and getting it shipped (if your relative is not coming down to the country.)
While our finance minister and his Government will no doubt take necessary and urgent steps to strengthen the rupee, I am left to endure with my precious yet delicate out of date mobile phone albeit only momentarily. The phone on its part is fast becoming difficult to handle and mind you that is a Nokia.
DISCLAIMER: This post is not intended to trivialise the undisputed special relationship that we share with our siblings.