A Travellerspoint blog

Another attempt at bargain hunting

26th October 2010

Outside the camp is a curio market, but this time we come away empty-handed. I am trying to buy a cooking book holder that looks like the wooden carved „fold-up“ chairs that are surprisingly comfortable and stable.

I am prepared to offer US$5 and my last orange cap. My last offer is US$7, but without the hat. I still don't have a deal.

Other items I like are wooden arches, with the animals two by two and Mr and Mrs Noah all fitting into the arch. Fun, but not a sensible buy, so I never seriously bargain for one

They also sell beautiful round bao boards, some with a chessboard on the back. I prefer them to the one we bought, but it doesn't really make sense to buy another one...

Later in the evening we have word that the owner of the book holder has changed his mind, so AH goes out of the gate for another round of negotiations. We no longer have US$7, as some of the money has been spent on drinks. So our offer is US$6, 100 Kwacha and my orange cap.

AH comes back with the bookholder – it's a deal if we add a bottle of Fanta. For me it's only a deal if I get the book holder nicelý polished.

So AH goes out once more, and once more the deal changes. AH has felt sorry for the seller and has now agreed to buy the seller a beer - which means we have now paid US$9 (plus my last cap).

The original asking price was only US$10 I think, so we have a long way to go until we are savvy bargainers...

Boy, going shopping in Africa takes stamina and endurance!

AH strikes a better deal when he hires a fishing boat. As soon as he sees the dugouts, he is determined to have a go.

The young fisherman originally asks for US$15. In the end, AH gets it for 150 Kwachas (about US$ 1), but it once again takes back and fourth negotiations, changing money, walking away and coming back. Too exhausting for me in the heat.

I stay in the shade, writing my blog, until the deal is done.

AH has asked me to photograph his heroic attempts. He looks like a rodeo rider trying to tame a wild horse.

The local lads are having a lot of fun watching AH's attempts to get control of the boat, so I suggest that they should pay HIM for the entertainment he provides.

Instead, the fisherman asks for further entertainment. He keeps asking that I take his photo. He is a real poser...

Posted by TTraveller 01:12 Archived in Malawi

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