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Monday, March 28, 2016

Pop Market

"Me, selling bracelets at a *pop market!!!???", I gasped. The mere thought was staggering! I didn't know the first thing about my merchandise! "What if the shoppers come in droves? What about toilet breaks? What about shoplifters? What if I screw up?", I spluttered.

But I couldn't possibly refuse my good friend, A, who only out of sheer desperation, sought my help. She knows what a klutz and muddlehead I am. Both of us had visions of me tripping and tipping the table over, bracelets and money scattered everywhere!

I owe A big time for the many favours she had done for me in the past. Her son, T, who owned the business was out of town to attend to an emergency and he had booked a stall for the weekend at the pop market months ahead. Not turning up for the event meant getting him blacklisted and he may never get a spot again in the future. He had been on the waiting list for vendor selection for a long time. Moreover, the stall rental was not refundable.

Freaking out at the daunting task ahead, I tried to enlist the assistance of Rodney, my sixteen year-old son. "What!!!???  Sell girly stuff at a market stall and horror of horrors, with my mother!!!!", he baulked, mortified by the thought. "What if my friends see me?"

After my desperate pleas, much cajoling, blackmailing (I was going to tell his elder brother something he did) and finally a bribe (a set of  new headphones), Rodney relented.

*Somewhat like a flea market, a pop market is a seasonal bazaar organized by and for young urban adults. Stall vendors are members of a pop culture club.

Can you spot Rodney trying to look as inconspicous as possible?
Turned out, the  bracelets were unisex and a great hit with the guys. Rodney bought these 3 for himself.

Sharing what I learned from the 2-day experience

1. Men are easier customers than women - they are decisive and quick with their selections. Women, on the contrary are picky, picky, picky! We had a lady who spent almost an  entire hour rummaging through the bracelets, finally snagging one only to return a minute later to exchange for another design!

2. Crowd attracts crowd - An oddity of human nature, people naturally follow the crowd, assuming the stranger in front of them knows more than they do!

3. Product display - Our stall attracted more people when the bracelets were disarrayed than when they were neatly organized in rows according to sizes!  Trolling through the merchandise in the hope of snagging the ultimate find made her less guilty, a shopper shared.

4. It pays to be trilingual!

5. Malaysians are an honest lot! Not one bracelet was pocketed despite the crowding!

We sold a total of 197 bracelets! Not bad for a first-time effort, I was told.

So will I do this again? Nah! While I enjoyed the two-day experience, I don't see myself doing this everyday. I would really rather have a work-at-home job.

This week's cookies

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Sunday, March 13, 2016

My First Eyebrow Threading Experience

I was having my hair cut when one of the shampoo girls asked if I wanted my eyebrows threaded for a mere RM10.00 (USD2),  Having spent the past 30 years of my life tweezing my eyebrows in a poor attempt to achieve some semblance of brow maintenance, I was glad for an alternative. Eyebrow threading is an ancient Indian practice rumoured to be as equally effective as tweezing, but quicker, and possibly less painful.

I was amazed at the result. There certainly is a difference. My sons said my brows now don't look like Susan Boyle's (before her makeover) anymore! Yep, they are looking neater and subtly arched.
The whole procedure did hurt just a bit and it made my eyes water. But the process was quick (about 8 minutes) and well worth the minimal pain.

I am now a convert!

A  video from YouTube to share.

Have you tried eyebrow threading?  If you haven't, would you?

This week's cookies for Easter

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Ramadan Bazaar 2016

It's almost the end of the Ramadan month which means that Muslims all over the world have been  fasting from sunrise to sunset. In Malaysia, Ramadan bazaars have been mushrooming all over the towns and cities. Essentially, they're like our pasar malam (night markets), except that mostly food and beverages are sold. Muslims (and non-Muslims) get to pick from a smorgasbord of snacks on their way home from work for breaking their fast just before dusk.

Sharing these photos I've captured when I was at the bazaar to pick up some apam balik.

Otak-otak - a fish cake wrapped in banana leaves and grilled over a charcoal fire

Apam balik - Turnover pancake

Cucur Udang (Prawn fritters)


Barbequed chicken wings

Sugar Cane Juice. The contraption you see in the pic is used to extract the juice from the sugar canes

Roti Jala - a lacy and net-like bread/crepe/pancake

Satay - skewered meat grilled over a charcoal fire

A variety of desserts

Drinks. 'Air' pronounced as ai-yer is a Malay word for water

Cookies I made for Father's Day

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Of Useless Skills and Posts

Every now and then, Rodney, my teen son would show me some useless video someone shares on Facebook.

Take the following video for instance.

Me: How does this benefit anyone? It's a useless skill.

Rodney: I am sure some guy who loses his hands in an accident would find this helpful.

Maybe he has a point there. I guess this post is just as useless as the video but I am really blocked for something to write about. Sorry, pallies!

This week's cookies for St. Patty's Day.

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday