Sometimes you can have all the luck in the world, sometimes it is a clear case of bargaining against the odds to get what you want for the best possible price. In my case, over the last few weeks, it has been a bit of both, and my photograph today shows the results: two new – to me – cameras at a price even I can afford. Both of them, I hasten to add, are in perfect working order, and both came from the flea market on Schlachte in Bremen.
For the Yashica there was no need to use any of our famed bargaining powers. I made an offer considerably less than the price the woman behind the table wanted which, as it was beginning to rain and the selling day was drawing to an end, was accepted without a word. I had already done my comparisons through the Internet – which I tend to do so that the seller cannot see whether I have any background information or not – and with roughly twenty-five Euro just for the winder on eBay, I think I came out of the deal reasonably well, paying eight Euro for the whole thing.
Photo Source: Viktoria Michaelis
The Daci was something else, and I must admit that I did not end up buying it at all. I communicated my offer a few weeks ago to the Syrian man standing next to a spread out bed sheet by the river Weser. I thought ten Euro would be quite a good price, and that was also the offer price on eBay for another Daci. The offer price, as the man so rightly pointed out, is only the starting price – which I knew because there were plenty of other Dacis on sale at between fifty and seventy Euro. It was also fairly early in the day, that time, and we wanted to get on and see a few other things, not just the market. I must add, one of us is not so keen on photography and cameras as the other; I hardly need mention which one!
Two weeks went by and the man was by the river again, the camera was still there, and he still wanted fifty Euro for it. No bargaining possible – although I did try to make my Love put more enthusiasm in the verbal side of the bargaining – he claimed to have paid twenty-five for it, and wouldn’t go below thirty-five or even forty.
Saturday. The sun was blazing down in Bremen as we wandered along the Schlachte, looking at the reduced flea market, cut down in size by the laying of new water pipes along half its length. There were four of us this time and, although I was tempted, I made a point of hurrying by the Daci, sitting there all forlorn with its case and no one to buy it and give it a good home. I’m sure the seller, if he even remembered me, didn’t see my furtive glances.
The idea is, perhaps, not a new one, but it is the first time I’ve used it. I bought the camera through a fairly simple form of trickery, something people may well say I shouldn’t be proud of, but I am nonetheless. And they would be too, if they had done it. One of our group was an eleven year old girl who, shy and unsure of whether she would be able to pull it off, went and made an offer to the seller. He turned her ten Euro bid down. I had expected this. I also expected her next bid to be turned down too: she should claim that she only had fifteen Euro, her entire pocket-money for the weekend.
So, I now own a Daci too…
Love & Kisses, Viki.