I was out of the house today early, with a long list in my head of the last minute things I will need in my pink house while I still have a scooter to use. The air was fresh  and I had that wonderfully wholesome morning sensation. It was a good shopping day too. However shopping in the markets here tend to mean having to haggle the prices down, but Goa has been so far the most confusing place I have ever haggled. I am used to it being something that is expected. They say the price, I offer half of what they say yet we smile at each other understandably because this is somewhat of a customer merchant friendship. Merchant with a friendly aghast look on his face says “what, this is handmade, good quality, ok ok I give you good price.” then he comes down on the price a little, I in return look aghast “I don’t have so much money, that is too much, ok ok how about” and I offer a little bit more, finally the price gets settled, and everybody’s happy. Here though, some people offer the right price from the start, and others offer the price ten times too high. When I try to haggle even a little bit, the merchants face (who offers the right price)clouds over with annoyance and he say’s no this is the price, thinking I am a stingy westerner trying to rip him off. Today when I had gathered a lot of household goods at a store in the market I asked them the price, working myself up into some kind of boldness. They said 1210 rupees. I calculated in my brain how many dollars that is, about twenty, then got my rupees confused and said  in a firm ready to haggle  voice “I’ll give you 1500 rupees. My eyes lighted up with embarrassment, there eyes with shock and we all had a good giggle for about 5 minutes. They definitely didn’t think I was being a stingy foreigner.

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