Magician Hawkers

It was around 9pm at Odeon, Tuesday last week when a cheap river road movie scene unfolded before my eyes. It was after watching the movie Antman, which if you haven’t watched, you should plan to. If you have ever been in town when kanjo decides to deal with hawkers, I’m sure you have experienced how crazy it can get in less than a minute. I have witnessed how in a couple of seconds, hawkers turn into would class magicians, pulling disappearing acts that would put Aladdin to shame. You watch a scene from Now You See Me unfold before your face. Now you see them, now you don’t. The streets clear up and most of the people that had been buying stuff are left stranded wondering, ‘what next?’

My weirdest moment was when I was in a matatu, front seat by the door. There was a bit of a traffic snarl up after the globe round about getting into town. Just before the Koja stage. Just chilling waiting to move, we saw a purple make shift bag, (which honestly was just a piece of  fabric that was possibly carrying clothes if not shoes) dropped from above us, the highway from Ngara into town, onto the road. The hawker soon followed and he was standing right in front of us just as traffic was about to move. Had the driver not reacted to the purple bean bag looking make shit bag, I fear what would have happened to the man. Well, this was the weirdest until said Tuesday night.

I was in a matatu waiting for it to fill up when I noticed some commotion. The hawker was busy trying to gather his things. A random guy kept reaching inside them and it looked like they were having a tag of war which the hawker won as he quickly ran off towards koja. I remember thinking, “this guy is stupid does he want him to get arrested?’ That was when I noticed the lady next to him and she was bare feet. Turns out as she was trying out shoes, hers got caught up in the frenzy and the hawker ended up leaving with them. I actually laughed at that. I was wondering how that even happens. I know when I’m trying on shoes I only try on one… so how he ended up leaving with the pair I have no idea. The next thing I know was just other hawkers running. I just hope she got her shoes back. If not i would hate to imagine how awkward it must have been looking for another hawker to buy shoes from, or having to get home that way. I remember I once bought slippers in town after my shoe got messed up while walking in town at night. Trust me walking bare feet in town is not pretty.