Mog's Christmas bonus came through today. A gift from the government for her to have a happy Christmas. I expect I'll get letters about Little Fish's and my own shortly. It's a nice idea - and in 1972 when it was first set up, £10 had quite a lot of buying power. Today I suspect the logistics of getting it out to everyone, including sending the inevitable separate letter to each qualifying member of a household, quite possibly costs about the same as the bonus itself.
There's always a heady debate about what we should spend it on. A pizza, for those of us who can eat? A couple of pairs of socks? A bunch of flowers?
It doesn't stretch quite as far now as it did in 1972. But there is a way it could stretch further; we could send it somewhere where the cost of living is quite a bit cheaper. I've mentioned Sarah before. She's just got word another 40 children are arriving for her next week. What might buy us a couple of nice takeaways or an alternative to the Sound of Music could go quite a bit further in India. It wouldn't come close to meeting her immediate needs, but what if lots of us did the same thing? If 24 of of us sent our Christmas bonuses to Sarah, that would cover the $400 she is wanting for Christmas presents for all the new children. If 14 of us did, that would cover pyjamas for them all. 8 of us could buy a new physio table. Just 3 of us could cover all the towels they need.
If it weren't for the letter announcing its arrival, I'm not sure I'd notice the extra £10 in the bank. I suspect there are quite a few of us in the same situation. Anyone else up for making it count?