A white elephant. A white elephant is a bad investment. I had some. And although being sober and a recovering white elephant collector, I still crave and being triggered by white elephant parks. One of my favored elephant parks being harbor’s stacked with white elephants. And white elephant cemeteries stocked with salvaged white elephants. Sailboats. A fairly second-hand white elephant priced $300,000 at R16.5 a dollar, will sink my dream with a massive R5 million hole in the hull. Down to the bottom immediately.  

I could rather invest R5 million and earn interest. Working on the argument R5 million versus rent a boat between R3000 to R5000 per day equals, say 1000 to 1650 days of sailing. Which is 2.7 to 4.5 years of full-time sailing, not paying insurance and or maintenance. Some out of pocket expenses here and there.

Or I can buy a stunning home in South Africa for R4 million. And with the remaining R1 million have 200 to 330 days of boat rent, sailing wherever in the world. Which, if split over 5 years equals between 40 to 66 days of sailing each year. No cleaning bird shit off my white elephant. No damages, wear and tear caused by sun and sea to my white elephant. No insurance. And no worries getting the old elephant sold in a global market flooded with white elephants.

Even a free white elephant, is free with reason. I guess I will buy a small, cheap, dingy elephant at 0.02% of R5 million, and make an informed financial decision. However, if you do perhaps have a free or $1 decent blue water sailboat for me, please email me. Eish. Triggers.

By Lourens Nel (MD)