I remember my younger brother was so happy with my small fridge when I first started teaching. He immediately made Milo ice popsicles and we were quite proud of ourselves. Today, 40 years down the road, he has gone far in life and he can have breakfast in Paris, lunch in London...and have a pint in Glasgow. Most of the hardworking kids of his age have done well in life. And electrical appliances would just be bought with a swipe of plastic at any time.
But of course many people would still be at the lower income group for many many good reasons.
Although affluence has indeed become a matter of fact for many Foochows from Sibu, there are still instances of frugality in some homes.
I remember a school teacher, a spinster who went around looking for a second hand fridge, of a certain height and size and she asked if her electricity bill would go up with her purchase.
She bought one for RM200 in good time. But it was only for chicken livers for her pets!! I remember an aunt said, "So many children even don't have fridge at home, and don't eat chicken liver...What a good life her pets have!!" Those were the days before Shelters for Stray Dogs and Cats.