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Saturday, 13 February 2016

The Changing Face of Luxury

Way, way back, a couple of centuries ago, oysters were food for the poor.  I remember reading that years ago and marvelling at it - as I still do when I see the exorbitant price of those delicious shellfish.  However my forefathers and foremothers would look in astonishment at how our expectations have changed.

Take fish.  When I was a little girl we had cod and chips (home cooked!) every week but fresh salmon was a very rare luxury and indeed few of my friends had ever tasted it.  These days salmon is considerably cheaper than cod.  

A car was a rare possession for families sixty years ago and most of my friends would travel by train when they went on holiday.  These days rail travel is very rare and few families have no access to a car (although I suspect that might be different in areas where there is still a proper public transport system). 

One of my most frequent errands as a child was to post letters for my Mother.  Although my Father's job meant that we had a telephone at home, few of our relations had such a convenience, so Mother would write regularly to her brothers and sister and to my grandparents.  Every day letters popped on to the mat and so news was shared.  

But today when my own letterbox rattled I found I had received one of those great twenty first century luxuries, a handwritten letter, this time all the way from the USA.  And so I prepared another luxury, real coffee (more or less unheard of in my youth) which I will drink from my beautiful china (Grandma very rarely used the best stuff), and read a handwritten letter from a land which seemed as far away as the moon when my Father went there on business when I was just five.
Sheer luxury!


  1. Awww -- great post! And I am glad it got there since I was so delayed in writing it. I send a birthday card to my son in law's mother and it took 9 weeks! I am sorry there wasn't that much news in it though!

  2. Very interesting and so true, postage is so expensive these days that sending letters or cards is becoming a luxury.

  3. There is nothing quite lie a handwritten letter, I do agree.

  4. It comes as quite a shock to realise exactly how much has changed over the last 60 years.
    In just 2 generations, it's strange to think that my young grandchildren cannot understand many things that were so normal to me - outside loo, no bathrooms, a pump in the back yard to draw water, no heating or double glazing (those mornings when you had to scratch the ice from the INSIDE of windows!) and also to realise that my sons don't know of such things, either. And the thought of not having a TV or a phone - well!

  5. I love this post. I've read it several times and each time I've been unable to think of an appropriate comment. So this time I'm just going to let you know that I love this post and I think I have the same french press as you. Thank-you for continually writing things to brighten others days. Lovely.