Being a marine engineer by profession, my job took me around the world in past five years. This particular incident at an Argentine sea port, Necochea.
Me and an electrical officer had gone for a city visit in the evening. A very good and non crowded city it is. Both of knew only one word in spanish. Gracias. So with this asset in our hand we were going about the city. Well, time came for our return to the ship, and we started the search of a cab. And no one was ready to come. It was very difficult bargaining with them since there were only private cabs in sight. No meter based cabs were around.
Finally with the help of one cab owner, we managed to persuade a driver to take us. He asked us for five dollars, and we had three. And another 100 dollar note which they wouldn’t have change for. We tried to explain the situation to the driver but couldn’t, with the only word we knew. But some how he understood the situation and agreed to take us.
Half way to the port, he stopped, and made a sign with two fingers indicating that we should go walking from there. After all the unintellegable agrument that followed, the driver pointed at the shopping bag in my hand. I saw a bag of potato chips protruding from it , with the price clearly visible as 2$. Immediately we agreed and he reached us to our destination in exchange of 3$ and a bag of potato chips.
Well, who says barter is a thing of past?
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