Take this test.
1. Suppose you have some money. Is it safer to put into one business or investment, or multiple businesses or investments?
2. Suppose over the next 10 years, the prices of the things you buy double. If your income also doubles, will you be able to buy less than you can buy today, the same as you can buy today, or more than you can buy today?
3. Suppose you need to borrow $100. Which is the lower amount to pay back: $105 or $100 plus 3%?
4. Suppose you put money in the bank for two years and the bank agrees to add 15% per year to your account. Will the bank add more money to your account the second year than it did the first year, or will it add the same amount of money in both years?
5. Suppose you had $100 in a savings account and the bank adds 10% per year to the account. How much money would you have in the account after five years if you did not remove any money from the account? $150, more than $150 or less than $150?
To be stuck without an exit is scary. Especially for those of us who are so committed to controlling our lives, the loss of control of what lies ahead adds to the feeling of being helpless. That’s what happened in the face of nature’s relentless outpouring of water from the skies in end-November. I was stuck in Puducherry, which was relatively less affected than Chennai but was cut off for a while with some key roads and bridges washed away. As I managed to get a taxi to reach Bengaluru, I tried booking a flight out of the city to New Delhi. I must have left it a little late, for by mid-day there were no tickets left for the next day, or those that were available, cost 10 times the normal fare between the two cities. News reports said the same thing—some airlines were price gouging in the face of huge demand on connecting flights out of cities that could be reached by road from Chennai.