Mar 23, 2011

Blessed Education

Blessed by our education or without it led to do some interesting things!

Take 1:
I feel under the weather today ... I'll take an antibiotic.  Do you mean a course?  No just one will do and I don't need the plastic capsule ... I'll just break it open and swallow the contents. That is not how antibiotics work or should be taken.  It is in our locality.

Take 2:
I think my toe bones are growing too fast.  My feet will be too big.  I'm going to treat it the local way ... drip vinegar on to the flesh above the bone.  Agh!  Why is my foot burning?  Because the vinegar was the regular 70%. Besides which unless you're trying to kill your toe, this treatment will never work.  It does in our locality.

Take 3:
My mobile phone just went up in smoke and with a bang.  What happened?  I tried to fix my charger like I fixed my hair dryer.I cut the wires and tried to join them back into the little black box.  They were too small so I just pushed them straight into the socket like we do with other electrical things.  Maybe the charger steps down the voltage.  No, all electrical things work the same in our locality!

Could be worse.  I've heard of tablets and capsules being pushed into the ear for direct results rather than taking orally.  Frost bite is one sure way of reducing bone length and the safe way to fix a charger is to buy a new one at less than 2 USD.

Miracles happen: A trip to the repair centre was greeted with "everyone brings their dead and dying phones to me expecting me to "raise them up"". Fix, fix ... there you go, 30 USD lighter but the phone is back in action.

Mar 21, 2011


Met this guy in the British Embassy "Steppe Inne".

He runs a website called NEPCHIN with the strap line "what do you need?"

It's all about bringing Customers and sellers together so those who need can find what they need, quickly and without hassle.

Mary & Martha have joined as a Seller primarily and in the last few days we were interviewed by "nepchin".  There some neat photos of a couple of our artisans and products as well as a plug for fair trade.

Take a look if you have the time ...

Mar 4, 2011

Business Loans or the Story of Apples and Oranges.

In the short term Apples allow guaranteed survival but there is something about Oranges that offer an improved sustainable life and an even more healthy future.  But Oranges are rare to find and not always available.

Sellers need to find Buyers of these life giving products.  The Apple sellers are becoming more in numbers as Apples are in good supply. Even with lowering prices the Apple sellers see a market for those who want to survive.

Those thinking long term survival do have a demand for Oranges when they can afford them but the market is tricky. Orange sellers have a complicated life themselves.  They want to retain their customers but don’t always have Oranges for sale.  So they have come up with a novel scheme.  They offer to sell Oranges at very reasonable to low prices for Oranges (which are still higher than Apples) but in the small print only to supply Oranges when they are available – otherwise Apples are supplied at Orange prices.  The track record says Oranges are supplied most of the time but there is no guarantee.  Actually the Orange Sellers don’t talk much about their track record unless pressed – they tend to rely on reputation or word on the street.  But the word is changing …

Then there are the adventurous Apple sellers; no, not the ones who just trade Apples; the ones who know that Buyers would really like to buy Oranges for longer life if they can buy them.  They offer Apples at good prices, maybe a touch over the regular Apple price but they claim that on occasions they will mix in a few Oranges if available at their slightly overpriced Apple prices.  When surviving on Apples this could be very appealing.

And of course the issue is all about risk.  If the Buyer goes for Oranges but is delivered Apples, he then has fewer funds to simply survive in the future.  But if the Buyer goes for Apples he may survive long enough and have sufficient funds to buy Oranges when they become available.

But the situation is dynamic.  As Oranges Sellers loose sales because there is growing doubt that they can deliver Oranges, some of the Apple sellers are looking at officially selling Apples and Oranges with new small print – Oranges will be more expensive than the sole Orange Sellers BUT if Oranges are not available they will supply Apples at the regular (not adventurous) rate until Oranges are available.  The Apple sellers have generally also been Apple eaters and know how to survive and they realize that in this growing market of Apple and Orange sellers they are in the ascendancy while the Orange Sellers see demand dropping even though the quantities of Apples and Oranges are the same or more than ever.

It is time for the Orange Sellers to decide if they can change and offer a product mix the Buyers can feel more certain about if they the Orange Sellers are to survive.

The bottom line is Buyers really want to know that Apples are Apples and Oranges are Oranges and want to know up front what they are buying.