Getting down to Selling in Vietnam

Four women sitting at the roadside with goods laid out in front of them, seen from above and behind. Women at the roadside spread out their goods in the early morning sun Other pages have shown sales from motorbikes, bicycles and panniers, on this page are photos of the simplest sales pitch of all: the ground. No entanglements with rents or landlords, no costs of fuel or encumbrance of future stock; just take what you have in a basket and go out, sit down with others, (a variety of seating arrangements can be seen: squatting, bits of card, low stools, chairs) and sell to those who pass by. Again these vendors are predominantly women selling surplus from their own land, or buying baskets of fruit and vegetables from wholesalers, and going to a strategic position. If this chosen spot is deemed inappropriate by the street wardens, the women move along to the next spot at seconds notice; an action often required in towns. Fruit in panniers by motorcycle park. And first a couple of photos of a common hybrid model; panniers to bring to the chosen pitch Rear view of two women sitting at roadside with the baskets of their panniers. Pannier carriers assemble and settle, able to stand up and leave instantly when wardens employed by the community appear. Shops and stall holders have to pay rents and taxes and do not welcome being undercut by these flexible entrepreneurs Line of sellers at a road junction in Ha Noi. This line has a bicycle with chestnuts, panniers with vegetables and a motorbike with flowers at the entrance to Hà Nội's biggest covered market. These women are likely... Piles of hats in front of women on a paved area with grass around. be moved on. Whereas the women above, in Sa Pa, are in a spacious park area away from any rivalry - and in any case are selling hats for tourists Man and woman behind piles of greens. The trick is finding an area where one's goods can be spread out without offending anyone, while still being easily seen. This corner between shops offers such a spot - and here a man is acting as reminder that there are few rules about social roles in Vietnam Woman holding money as vendor ties plastic bag. A customer waits while the plastic bag is neatly tied, an experience repeated at every purchase in every market Bend and road junction with stalls at intersection. Road junction and bend - perfect 'location' Line of produce on mats in front of line of women leaning against barrier. The crash barrier here provides support for tarpaulins, and gives a sense of order One seller with a number of customers and boy on bike. Another strategic site just by a bridge with nothing to distract customers Customer squatting sorting her plastic bags. Everything is sold in plastic bags - to environmentalists' consternation Customer placing fruit in a bag held by vendor. Customers (here friend Hân) choose their own items of fruit or vegetables Woman watching another trying to get money out of her pocket in front of wares spead out. Getting money out - a universal fiddle Man standing holding trousers, woman from motorbike holding two large fish. This man has just come up to the road from the river below to sell these fish he has caught - he is in fact putting his trousers back on Customer standing with bundle of vegetables by baskets and woman sitting cooking. To the right a woman is selling hot snacks from a portable charcoal burner Two women sitting on stools behind their vegetables wrapped in a variety of ethnic clothes. This roadside market, on the border of Sơn La - Điện Biên provinces, in north-western Vietnam, is home to some very colourful ethnic groups, although not always easy to identify as with this pair who seem to have gathered ideas from Dao, H'Mong and Viet cultures Vendor with box, older woman with umbrella passing. A polystyrene box - insulating what? Younger woman standing by sitting older woman both, in their different ways, with expressions of anxiety at what they are staring at. Two women seeming slightly alarming - by what? Group of women eating from banana leaves, one have head massage. Lunch time for this group, and a head massage for the woman on the left Women produce spread out customers inspecting, boy watching. This rather jumbled picture of vendors, customers and goods by a country roadside far from the towns... Woman bending over her produce. ... contrasts with a neater arrangement of
vegetables here...
Woman with many bowls of sifferent vegetables arranged in front of her. ...but even better this woman has a safe large patch in central Hà Nội where she can do full justice to her produce; produce which includes banana flowers - the purple cones Trailers... Girl sitting painting pot, many stacked on tables beside her. The next page takes you to one of Hà Nội's many specialist villages - Bát Tràng is entirely devoted to ceramics Men painting characters on another man. The next page of the Mosaic Section is headed 'Poet-Painter'.
Or go to the contents Go to the contents of the Mosaic Section. of the Mosaic Section.
Saturday 16th July 2022 Murphy on duty to this site

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