If you want to buy a car, there are reliable Japanese brands such as Suzuki, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Korean brand Hyundai, American Ford and Chevrolet ( who has since decided to call it a day in India) and whole lot of European brands viz. Mercedes, Audi, Skoda, BMW, Porsche, Lamborghini, Renault and of course our very own Tata and Mahindra. If you want a bike, again you have Suzuki, Honda, Yamaha and our own Hero, Bajaj, TVS and ever loveable Enfield. And this is true for almost every thing – there are more than 50 major brands of soaps, at least 10 major toothpastes, 15 shampoos, several edible oils, haircare, TVs, Mixers and refrigerators. At the last count, you have a choice of more than 1000 TV channels, including all regional channels.
Rewind it to not too far off but say early and mid 80s. We had Ambassador and Fiat, Rajdoot and Yezdi, Bajaj and Lambretta ( or Vijay Super) , Colgate, Binaca and Forhans, Lux, Lifebuoy and Hamam and Dalda and Rath. And for entertainment, there was Doordarshan. Neither there were means to buy things nor any great choice! Yet, life was more peaceful and fewer materialistic choices meant greater investment in relationships!
We are spoilt for choice of things but very poor in relationships. It’s me, my wife and my children and of course my swanky home, luxurious car, state of the art cell phone, highly paid job and globe trotting! But parents, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, friends are all in contact through WhatsApp communication on birthdays, anniversaries and select festivals !
Can we invest a little less in materials and little more in relationships? Let’s for once be spoilt for choice in a different realm.