Why Nostalgia Sells

Recently I have been pondering why people pay such huge premiums to live in an Estate - as opposed to a nice house in the suburbs. For a moment let me take you back to a time when life was different. There were no smart phones and no internet. If you were out of the house and you wanted to make a phone call you used a public pay phone. We didn't have email and you had to sit down and write a letter then post it. You didn't take photos with your phone but with a camera that used physical film and you had to take it to be developed. There was no social medial, no Facebook, no Twitter, no WhatsApp. But there was gossip and that seemed to fill the gap. In those days when people went out for a meal they actually talked to each other. Kids didn't play video games but instead went outside and played real games with real people under a real sky. If it was hot you could leave your car parked on the street with the windows partly opened to cool it down. Security companies didn't really exist. The only people who had high walls and electric fences were celebrities. This brings me back to my thoughts of why people live in estates. I believe it offers some of the feeling of times gone by. Here's a small example. It is a beautiful summer evening and you have just finished diner. You and your wife decide to take a walk to visit friends who live ten minutes away. Now when is the last time you took a walk in the evening? I mean without carrying a club or a gun or taking along the Doberman? Estate living creates an artificial environment that mimics the past. That is what people are willing to pay for. They can let their kids play in the street, leave their front door open, and park their car in front with the windows partly down. They can walk in the evening to visit their neighbours - and it all feels so safe and normal. But remember this 'normal' community is surrounded by three metre high walls topped with state of the art security and comes with a small army of security guards. In the end it is just a clever illusion, and as such a bit sad - but I guess that is why nostalgia sells.