I have been away from home with my work for 2 days. Now, I am self-employed, and while a certain amount of my expenses are found, I still have to fund certain things. For example, I have to pay my own way to get there (I was working in Dorset) I have to provide my lunch and anything like cups of tea etc. I will however be given dinner and breakfast and accomodation.
This can often leave me slightly out of pocket, not the end of the world, but considering that I am away for work and not play, I feel like I don't really want to be spending my own hard earned and hard saved money.
The travel is something it is hard to get out of as I have to get there. However, I car pooled and the petrol cost just £20 per person. So far so good, only £20 out of pocket. Thursday morning saw me getting up very early and making a large amount of sandwiches for my lunch and a portion of flapjack to take with me, easy to store in tupperware and would easily stop me from getting hungry at any point.
It was quite fun to compare what I was spending with what my colleagues were spending, so while they stopped into a motorway service station to buy some very sad looking sandwiches, crisps, cake and drinks, I had my far superior sandwich sitting on the grass with some tap water brought from home and a piece of my flapjack. Couldn't help feeling a little bit smug at this point!
Arrived at destination and did a few hours work through the afternoon and then had an early dinner (provided) and then worked until about 22.15. One of my colleagues, (a particularly spend happy man) had bought a large bag of marks and spencer food that still had in it a sandwich, 3 packs of biscuits, chocolate. etc.
He decided to throw away the lancashire cheese and onion chutney sandwich because he wasn't going to eat it. I suggested he should save it til tomorrow, but he looked at me as thought I was quite mad and pointed out that it would be out of date by tomorrow. Now forgive me for asking, but what is there to go off in a lancashire cheese and chutney sandwich kept for 1 day?
So on his way to the bin I swooped in and said I would have it - great, Friday's lunch sorted.
Friday saw a very full days work, but while my work mates were buying cups of coffee (£2+ a time) I just made use of the kettle and brewed my own cup of tea to have with some of my flapjack.Cheese and chutney sandwich for lunch, while colleagues treated themselves to a bought lunch. Dinner, again, provided and then set off for home at about 22.00. Arriving back at home by 01.40. Now I never went hungry, far from it, never felt like I was denying myself and never felt like I needed to spend. Final bill for the two days away, £20 for the travel and nothing else. I imagine my colleagues had probably spent at least twice that, possibly more.
Interesting to note that my friend and colleague who I swiped the sandwich off also went to throw away a completely unopened packet of the marks and spencer biscuits which he never ate because he didn't want to take them home. They are now, obviously, happily sitting in my cupboard!
Isn't it strange how people will throw away perfectly edible food rather than save it for another day?
This next 3 months I am working away from home many many times and I am going to see if I can spend an absolute minimum (travel costs aside). Its all money I can put back into paying my own mortgage, when all said and done. Why should marks and spencer, starbucks, costa etc have it all?