Random Thoughts: A Ride in NJ

Irshad Salim, Karachi: A Pakistani neighbor of mine migrated (leap of faith) from Lahore to Dammam to NJ. He used to do construction & maintenance contracts in KSA, he told me.

The gentleman bought a single-family house (super value) A) without any mortgage, and B) a brand new Mercedes. BUT C) had it wrapped in clothing, and had it stranded in his garage.

D) He would open the garage whenever he had BBQ, and tell us all repeatedly that he doesn’t use the car because he spent a lot of money in outright purchasing it.
To him, he said, he enjoys that he owns a Mercedes, even though he hardly uses it.

One day, the Mercedes wouldn’t start! He called me up, got it fixed, and tried selling it off.
He got the book value (25% less) though. He went berserk!

“I thought Mercedes’ value goes up, not down”, he asked me.
“Here, cars are sold on book value–which takes into account depreciation,” I said.
He was upset. To confirm my opinion, the gentleman asked couple of other neighbors also.
ALL gave the same answer.
One asked me, “He doesn’t know what the book value means in buying/selling?”.
“He says he lost lots of money selling his Mercedes”, the neighbor added.

A year or two later, the gentleman purchased my office alogwith the furniture, furnishings.
He told me he like my office fit-out, and would pay for the furniture, etc. after he moved in.
I agreed.
I was in Toronto when he moved in.
My Office Engineer Asama called me up saying the gentleman changed his mind after moving in. I was stuck! Had to give him all for ‘free’. Trying to get rid of them would be a logistic nightmare.

“You should have called the town, the cops, sued him, etc.” one neighbor suggested.
“You’ve been taken for a ride,” he said.
“No, I can’t, I won’t…he’s from my country of origin”, I said.
“You’re an idiot”, my neighbor said.

May 29, 2024 | Jhatke Pe Jhatka (Shock & Awe) Series