We all tend to perform better when we use a word like ‘challenge’ in front of a given task (call it a kind of self motivation) – Hence the TITLE
With mum out of outdoor action (shoppin’, marketin’ and other outdoor related activities) due to the fickle weather and the various viral virus related issues it brings along with it..
I have been entrusted with the outdoor activity, which otherwise I would do occasionally – but when the ‘occasionally’ becomes something you end up doing regularly… it isn’t fun anymore! At least not in the weather conditions we are blessed with in India (the high 30’s-The Indian Summer is well-n-truly here!)
Let’s start with the everyday vegetables:
This part is easy – you see, you point or simply say the name of the vegetable, quantity, he packs it up for you, pay cash and move on.
You’d think one would need good communication skills (in the local language) to say what you need and know basic numbers, in order not to get cheated. I am pretty bad at that! Okay! I get it, being Goan and I don’t speak Konkani. Shame! Shame!
I am Goan and have been living in the state since birth.. and I do not speak Konkani. Don’t blame me, I have always spoken English at home and outside, so can you fault me if I can’t put a proper grammatical sentence together? I can understand a wee bit.. but I mean its not like I HAVE to learn the language, I did have to in School though – but that was different, I didn’t have much of an option. Never a good student in Konkani or Hindi for that matter at school level (at best acquiring passing marks)
.. and I was no way going to make a fool of myself speaking broken konkani and get laughed at or at best misunderstood or told to repeat what I said.. and one can’t expect market vendors to converse in fluent English either.
I go by the simple rule: I need to buy something, you need to sell it. I am ready to pay, make a little effort and try to understand me, after all isn’t the customer the most important person? (I’ve read that somewhere)
Initially, I’d make a big effort and rehearse my lines before I left the house (in konkani – the bare minimum) to speak to these guys, but I’d eventually mess it up. I eventually chucked that idea and switched to English, applying my simple RULE.
As time passed, I eventually did do all my talking in English and I was surprised that they responded in the same language. I had under-estimated them – they do speak English maybe not like the queen herself.. but as long as we understood each other, that was more than enough. We’d exchange the odd smile in between and everything was good.
Marketing and doing outdoor jobs are not easy! How women can do it day-after-day is beyond me!
No wonder men are never seen shopping, coz women are far better at it!
The few lessons/experiences I’ve had over the past 1 month….
- There will always be favorites (shopkeeper/fruit-seller/grocery shop) where you’ll buy your stuff from (even if you have to walk/drive extra)
- Women never walk in straight lines (nothing new in that) they’ll walk in the middle and depending on their mood, will take sides (left/right) making unscheduled stops (not because they need to buy something) .. but just!!
- Previous knowledge of vegetables, pulses, lentils, powders and paste’s are needed, else you’re definitely gonna screw up big time! (the internet is a big help)
- A cool beverage to keep yourself cool is a must everyday. Keep separate cash for that. Cold coffee is my choice else chilled Falooda (without the black seeds)
I am into the 2nd month of shopping, at least now I know where to get what and I need not go in circles to search. That way, it reduces time and one can conserve energy.
..and what’s the deal with bananas? yellow bananas & green bananas – village ones and town ones.. ripe & raw..
but how does one make out if bananas are raw, ready to eat, just ripe or over ripe? I always seem to get that calculation wrong!
I’ve not yet ventured into buying Fish… or meats and the likes. All in good time