Your Survival Guy has a client whose grandfather left him some money. That was nice. But the real gift was how his grandfather would teach him about money when they were together. How to roll pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters sitting on the floor and talking. Adding up the pile and feeling the weight in their hands. The boy was taught what interest was, how it was paid, and the miracle of interest on interest. Compounding small amounts into larger ones. The small talk never felt like big life lessons. But they were.
As they got older, the money did too—a dollar wasn’t worth a dime—but the older ones were. The ones saved and invested were worth many times more than they were years ago. “How’s your book coming along?” the grandfather asked. “Good,” the grandson said. “I’m in the editing process.” Without fail, they would talk about the grandson’s position in Wellington, a balanced fund, they enjoyed adding to over the years with Christmas and birthday money.
Then, one day, the grandfather was gone. And the grandson’s position in Wellington, overnight, was much larger. The grandson’s life wasn’t getting any easier. He could have used that money to help ease some of the strain on the budget. But he didn’t. He protected that money, the memories, knowing that when it’s gone, it’s gone.
In my conversations with the grandson, we talk as if his grandfather is still alive. Not once has the grandson called to take out extra for his problems, the same problems we all have. The money is part of his life. If he loses it, he’s losing more than money—not that his grandfather would be upset (maybe a little).
Action Line: When I think about the two of them, I picture two figures, one big, one small, walking in a snowstorm. Their heads down, fighting the wind. Never alone. One step in front of the other. It’s not dangerous. It’s peaceful. Because they’re together.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
Latest posts by E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy (see all)
- Wellesley Fund: “Balanced Investing Is Dead” (Please Stop) - December 8, 2023
- Do You Have a Plan to Protect Your Personal Data? - December 8, 2023
- DIRTY JOBS: America Needs Mining Engineers - December 8, 2023
- Investing Habits of the Fairly Wealthy: #2 Coach - December 7, 2023
- Have All of New Jersey’s Workers Already Moved to Florida? - December 7, 2023