Sunday, April 15, 2012

Cutting costly corners - and cutting weeds!

An American friend living here in Oz, (it seems like we're everywhere!) recently sent me this information - comparing prices from one city to another, or I think you can even do it "country to country". (but since prices can vary from one city in a country to another, what's high in one city, may be lower just a few miles away)
I mean, I knew that things were much more expensive here where I live... but I sure as heck didn't realize by just how much!

Cost of Living comparison Between Sacramento,California USA, and Melbourne Victoria AU

Consumer Prices in Melbourne are 51.12% higher than in Sacramento, CA
Consumer Prices Including Rent in Melbourne are 56.42% higher than in Sacramento, CA
Rent Prices in Melbourne are 77.17% higher than in Sacramento, CA
Restaurant Prices in Melbourne are 67.23% higher than in Sacramento, CA
Groceries Prices in Melbourne are 28.48% higher than in Sacramento, CA


Meal at an Inexpensive Restaurant, CA - $9.33 ... Australia - $15.35
+64.41 % higher
Meal for 2, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course CA - $35.00 ... Australia $67.01
+91.45 % higher
Combo Meal at McDonalds or Similar CA -$5.60 ... Australia - $7.67 $
+36.94 % higher
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter draught) CA - $2.62 - Australia - $5.71
+117.36 % higher
Imported Beer (0.33 liter bottle) CA - $3.38 ... Australia $6.78
+101.00 % higher
Coke/Pepsi (0.33 liter bottle) CA - $1.34 ... Australia $2.88
+115.32 % higher
Water (0.33 liter bottle) CA - $1.20 ... Australia $2.47
+105.66 % higher

Clothing and Shoes

1 Pair of Levis 501 (Or Equivalent) CA - $38.75 ... Australia $90.11
+132.54 % higher
1 Summer Dress / Chain Store (Zara, H&M, ...) CA - $33.33 ... Australia $84.42
+153.26 % higher
1 Pair of Nike Shoes CA - $69.75 ... Australia $141.84
+103.36 % higher
1 Pair of Men Leather Shoes CA- $65.00 ... Australia $172.18
+164.89 % higher

Eggs (12) CA - $2.62 ... Australia $3.85
+46.57 % higher
Potatoes (1kg) CA -$1.55 ... Australia $2.47
+58.70 % higher
Lettuce (1 head) CA - $1.95 ... Australia $2.46
+26.14 % higher

So, when I saw Arugula greens in the grocery store for almost 5 bucks a bunch, a light bulb went off in my head.
I decided to go for the much cheaper option, and to simply go out and weed my yard. Unfortunately, we're only eating one plant at a time, but at the rate we're going we'll will eventually get 'er done!
This way, I can live high off the hog... and at the same time, I'm saving bucket-loads of money!
Which kind of leaves my yard looking like an overgrown jungle, but hey... in the end, it's all good eats!!
Now you may think that dandelions are just your pesky garden-variety weed, but dandelion
greens have become so popular nowadays, that many grocery stores and greengrocers now stock cultivated varieties. I think it's probably because it's less labor-intensive than running around and digging up peoples yards. And chances are, if you've ever had an Arugula Salad in some high-priced fancy-schmancy restaurant... you were actually eating dandelions and didn't even know it.

This one is Purslane - or known by some people as "little hogweed" It's tart and lemony, with a slight peppery kick... and the Old Guy loves it fresh, although you can cook 'er up too.
I throughly investigated it before even trying it,( I recommend investigating anything out in the wild - or in your yard... before putting it in your mouth or on your plate) so I had to laugh at this description:

Known formally as portulaca oleracea, and informally as little hogweed, purslane
is a succulent herb that looks, as one Baltimore chef put it, like a miniature
jade plant. A more colorful description can be found in seed catalogs, which
note that in Malawi, the name for the fleshy, round-leafed plant translates to
"the buttocks of the wife of a chief."

Now the Old Guy has trouble remembering the name purslane or even "the buttocks of the wife of a chief", so he simply calls it "Chiefs Arse".

Honey? Can we eat some of the Chiefs Arse tonight?
Sure dear, go cut some off...


Reddirt Woman said...

I've killed dandelions aplenty here in Oklahoma and purslane is one of our favorite summer flowers to grow in pots... never thought about eating dandelions although I had heard of eating them. The purslane is one I'd never heard of eating. I'm glad to know if I get hungry for salad greens I can go to the yard as long as no one has sprayed...

Oh, and if you come to Oklahoma you could cut even more off your grocery bill. Large eggs in Okie land, for instance, run about $1.25, 5# of potatoes run about $2.99. I don't know kg to pounds comparison.

Tatersmama said...

Reddirt Woman... 1 kg = about 2.20 lbs. So that would be...what? 2 kgs = approx. 4.5 lbs, so $5.97 for a 5lb bag? Or did I do that backwards? lol!

Karen Deborah said...

those weeds are food?
if you can make a living there lady come on back to US.

Nancy M. said...

Wow! Everything is so much over there! I couldn't afford to live there. Glad you'll be coming home for good soon!

Ladybird World Mother said...

Wow, those price comparisons are unbelievable!!
LOVE the weed food... must go and investigate out in my garden. xxxx

Karen Deborah said...

Hey try a comparsion to MS I'd love to see those stats.
post again dear, I have rounded on you twice and I am really getting to be quite sporadic these days.


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