The Bizarre Bazaar

Went to the bazaar today and it was…bizarre (hee, hee, get the play on words?) Tuesday are my day off and so Wilson and I (Wilson’s a good friend of mine from the shop) decided to head to the other side of the base to do some shopping at the BX/PX.

The Bazaar is a little building where everything is glass doors and all the items are compacted in there for everybody to see, hanging from ceilings with ancient helmets from Afghanistan’s past to brand new DVDs (both real and pirated). To top it off, you have a little Afghanis sitting in their corner with their white hats, robes, and smiles. If felt like I had walked into one of those middle eastern movies where you see the people hawking their wares on the market.

What was cool about the bazaar is that it was like a real middle eastern one. There were no price tags on anything! Wilson did a marvelous job haggling for an item by pretending not to be that interested in it and got the seller to lower his price. Sad to say, I did not do as good of a job.

What caught my eye was a hand made chess set in a wooden box covered in green felt. The pieces were carved out of marble and so was the board. The seller had already allied up beside me with a big grin on his face.

“Good morning, Friend! Beautiful chess set made from the quarries of Kabul, Afghanistan. Give you a very good price.”

Here was the shocker. Something like this would go for about 150 to 200 dollars in the United States. I asked how much and he said, “Only 35 American dollars”.

I have him that price just because it was such a beautiful board. Stupid American, right?

But I do own a gorgeous chess set. I’m glad I bought it and plan to go back, though this time gonna do some haggling and see what deals I can get. Oh, what fun in Afghanistan!

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