Sema! Chance-ae illa! – International Women’s Day Special


I must confess that I usually don’t write about such special days. I let them pass by. But what’s happening today? Well! One of my college-mates has posted an article on her linkedin page, pleading other women to empower and appreciate the fellow women’s deeds.

Though Usha has pleaded fellow women, I take this opportunity to narrate  the experience I had yesterday at the vegetable market.

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It was around 10:00 am and I was assigned (by who else! 🙂 ) to bring home some lemons and ginger. Here I went!

On reaching the market, first stop, must’ve been the ginger, greenchillies, kothmir shop; however, our ‘regular’ shop was shut and I had to go further down the road; all the way to the other end of the road to the next available ginger shop. I was strolling along, passing by many other vegetables, tomato, onions & such shops. En route, I decided to make the best use of the trip by buying some vegetables too. I, absent minded, stopped at a shop. But found no vendor was ‘manning’ the shop. There were shops selling vegetables on either sides of this shop and I still wonder why I chose this particular shop; no one manning the shop. Just thinking about whether to buy vegetables or not, I decided to skip the vegetables part and proceeded further down the road to buy ginger. I bought the ginger and walked back the same way. On both the sides of the road, in the market, you’ve got n number of shops selling the same stuff. But still I wonder why I had to stop at the same shop, again, on my way back too. Yup! I mechanically went back to the same shop; this time, I was lucky to find that shop being ‘manned’ by a ‘paatti ma’. (For those who wonder about these Tamil words in blog I’ll try to update you with their meanings. Paatti maa = A grandma like old lady).

With her ‘bokkai vaai’ gleaming: What do you want da, kannaa?

Me: Paatti maa, Ladies fingers – quarter kg please! Is it young and tender?

As it was away from my reach, well inside the shop, I couldn’t test it out myself. She didn’t even reply me; however, she took the liberty to snap a couple of ladies fingers to prove me that they’re tender, she was piling up the container with all the stock she had got.

Me: (Panickingly) Paatti maa, is it for me? Quarter kg is enough for me.

She: Take everything paa. Just over a kilo for 30 Rs only.

Me: No..no! Quarter kg is enough for me. Actually, kids don’t eat vegetables at all. (I didn’t want to get shower from my BOSS, you know!)

She: (Without flinching) Ok! Take half a kilo for 15 Rs. Quarter kilo is 10Rs. (Now she is trying to reason out)

Me: No … Paatti maa! Half a kilo of vendakkaa (Lad Fing) is too much for us.

And only by now she had listened to my request and gave me what and how much I wanted.

In the meantime, there was another lady shopped joined me

Lady Shopper: Paatti maa, how much is tomato?

She: Take 3 Kilos for 25 Rs maa.

LS: How much is 1 kilo?

She: 1 kilo is 10 Rs. 3 kilos for 25 Rs.

Me: Paatti maa. Give me one drumstick too.

She: Take 3 for 20 Rs. 1 is 10 Rs.

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Till this moment, I’m simply awestruck by this old lady’s up-selling techniques. In the Hotel & Cruise Industries, I’ve come across n number of training programs emphasizing the up-selling techniques to stay one step ahead of the pack. And, yesterday I met the epitome of up-selling! 

I’ve never shopped at her place all these years. But still wondering why I had stopped at her shop on my way up and down as well. Do you know why?

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P.S: No need to say, I ended up buying 3 drumsticks and more than enough of bitter gourd, beets, carrots, beans and brinjal.

P.P.S: What a way to link Usha’s article and International Women’s Day and Ladies fingers. Sabaash da Baabu! 

(And my mind voice: Dei, the readers have to say ‘sabaash’; not yourselves)

And here is the link to Usha’s “A woman’s day plea to all women”