People have been citing this or that figure to show that inflation (ie all prices combined) is rising at the fastest for almost a generation. We can all see that in the way oil prices have quadrupled in recent years.
Perhaps less obvious is the way property prices have also quadrupled or in some cases even risen 10-fold.. in one generation. But then, most of us don’t notice, as most of us don’t go out buying a property every few days.
But at the Cold Storage supermarket in Great World City just now I was struck that even the often lowly Fuji apple from China was going for 80 cents each. It must have been less than two months ago when I was able to buy five for $2 at Fairprice!!
So, in a fit of stinginess, I found myself looking for bargains among the vegetables, and found it in a knock-down packet of two harigourds (I think they are called in English, tho at home we always refer to them as jit-kwa from a time when the gourd indeed did have a sort of waist, long since gone to the dogs with today’s kind of farming). What was priced at $2.80 had gone down to $1.40.
Perhaps my stingy fit had been ignited by the leap in the buffet lunch price served at the main lounge at the Singaore Cricket Club. Only in May, I was singing its praise for the special promotion which allowed two to dine for the price of one ie $12.90. The spread was great. For more of that bygone bargain, go here.
Today, I had a little shock. The price of the buffet lunch had gone up to $14.40 from the pre-promotion price of $12.90.
The quality, quantity and variety of the spread had already been going down bit by bit since the promotion ended and now has reached a level where frankly I don’t think it’s value for money any more.
When the buffet started, heaven knows when, there was fresh tuna, lightly seared; smoke salmon; a variety of salads; roast chicken, Parma ham, mango chutney, tandoori chicken and so on, till the tables were groaning.
Today, the only plus thing is the poached salmon (vitiated a bit by liberal dabs of salad cream or mayonnaise sauce). And a new item under a covered serving dish was for heaven’s sake(!) roasted potato wedges. How downmarket can you get?
There was still the daily soup which my friends pronounced to be very good but since I’m not a soup person I didn’t taste. Another consolation is the bread basket. It still passes muster but buffets don’t live by bread alone. Or soup and poached salmon for that matter!