All around the city on any given day there are “ferias” which are essentially open air farmer’s markets. They are fantastic! Today I stumbled upon one near my dermatologists office in Higeionopolis, an affluent mainly Jewish neighborhood, a straight busride from our house. It was near the end of the feria, so the vendors were anxious to sell off whatever they had left.
Needless to say, my excitement met their anxiousnes with open arms! I didn’t haggle nor barter, but they were literally giving away their goods to me! I usually feel bad bartering with these guys after a really insightful and great person pointed out to me that the vendors are in a different position than I am, and why make their lives any harder than they already are (this was said on the Navajo Reservation a few years ago while buying a piece of art.) So if I do have the money enough to buy, I should pay their fair price and now that is exactly what I do.
The fair price today was totally in my favor! Thank god I can speak Portuguese now, it certainly gives me more crediblity than before. I walked away with 2 Huge Bags of ripe bananas, a pineapple, 10 baby eggplants, 3 big green bellpeppers, 1 beautiful red bell pepper, 3 japanese cucumbers, 4 ripe papayas, 2 packages of super ripe strawberries, a kilo of tomatoes and one big bok choy for R$10.50!!! That is a little more than $6 USD!
I was totally overloaded and was sooo relieved to put my bags down when I got onto the bus. It was quite a venture on my way back, but thankfully everyone I came in contact was so nice and helpful. I offered up bananas but noone took them. An older man was walking my way just as I turned walking into my neighborhood and was sooo kind! He helped me with half of my bags all the way up to the driveway! I tried to give him some strawberries, but he refused and said “prazer” which means “my pleasure”.