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Sunday, 29 October 2017

Milkman, his nephew and my old laptop

What I want to sell is a buffalo and not a laptop Mom.’
Come again.’
I said I want to sell a buffalo.... Sorry I wanted to say that what I want to sell is a laptop and not a buffalo.’
I know that’
and that is the reason why you told about it to the milkman.’

The burly milkman tore the non-existent curtains in front of my eyelids and stood there on his signature hard and sturdy black gents bicycle, adroitly balancing the two milk cans on each side. He smiled behind his flowing moustache as he watched the screen of my laptop which he had perched on the handle of his bike.

See if you want to sell, you have to speak.’
I agree, but to a milkman?’
But my mother was very firm on her stand. The following days our two maids with the same name, whom I had named as Shanta one and Shanta two, our watchman and the old aunty who took out her dog for a walk, and smiled back at my mother, knew that my old laptop was for sale. I told my friends and the laptop mechanic that my laptop was for sale. On second thoughts I felt that my mother, who didn’t possess any management degree, had succeeded in breaking into the market which I had never thought of.

Its brand new. My son, since his childhood handles his things with great care. So even after years of usage, his things appear as if we have just bought it from the market and the laptop it is super fast. These days he even buys groceries and some times vegetables too from it.’ This was my mother’s marketing pitch.

The next week the burly milkman came to our house in the afternoon.
Bhaiyaji did you forget to give us the milk in the morning?’ I asked when I opened the door for him.
Na, na babua, this is Ramesh my nephew and we have come to see the laptop.’ He said. A young man who appeared to be an abridged version of the milkman stood next to him.
I escorted them into the house. My mother joined us with a victorious smile on her face.

The young man examined the laptop. ‘I liked it.’ He said. My mother’s smile stretched all along her face. ‘Five thousand.’ He said, quoting the price for my laptop.
What?’ I said. ‘I got it for thirty five thousand.’

Then we negotiated. The prospective buyer increased the purchase price by rupees one hundred for every ten minutes and after one and half hour, during which I told him about the technical specifications of the laptop, hearing which he sounded indifferent but the milkman nodded his head in appreciation, his quote stood at six thousand.
If the laptop is so good, why are you selling it.’ Asked the milkman when there was an impasse.
That is because he has got another one from his company. What is the point in keeping two laptops in home. You cannot garland them around your necks.’ It was my mother. Now I was really appreciating her skills. It was only the milkman and my mother who laughed at the garlanding around the neck joke.

Then I used another strategy which I had learnt while studying negotiations. I offered the milkman’s nephew a set of speakers free if he purchased the laptop. But he didn’t catch the bait. His funda was simple. He wanted to buy the laptop for no more than rupees six thousand. That was the dead end to negotiations and my laptop didn’t reach the milkman’s nephew’s hands.

Finally I sold my laptop to a very dear friend, who was facing a financial crunch and was in dire need of a laptop. He being a friend, there was no any question of negotiations and I simply accepted whatever he thrust into my pocket. I wish I had known about cashify back then. You can sell your laptops, mobile phones and other gadgets on cashify. Use coupon code CLEANCASH and get additional Rs.250 on your sale. So what are you waiting for. #CleanUpCashOut



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