Tag Archives: moving

South Africa Part 9: Our last day in Cape Town

Our last day in Cape Town we spent the day at Green Market Square. The day before we had asked one of our servers  where was a good place for us to purchase South African souvenirs at a cheaper price. He said Green Market Square was the place to go. Since we only had a few more hours left in Cape Town until we departed, we ate a small breakfast and made our way to Green Market Square. We called an Uber and he dropped us off right by the square

Once we walked up, there were several different vendors and most of them were selling the same things. Initially I thought that each vendor had hand crafted, painted or sewn each item, but as I walked around I realized that they all had the same exact items. But this was not that big of a deal to me because the items were very nice nonetheless.

What is good about Green Market Square is that you can negotiate prices with the vendors. What is bad about Green Market Square is that you can negotiate prices with the vendors. What do I mean? Well first off it is always a good thing when you can talk down a price but some times this can lead to vendors haggling you, giving you their life story about how much they are struggling or even you feeling guilty that you asked for a cheap price on an item (this was my case, I felt really bad asking for lower prices). It was a bit overwhelming when we were walking around the different booths trying to decide what to get. I wanted to get everything, but of course I could not. It was also overwhelming because as soon as I would go up to look at an item more closely I was then bombarded with the vendor asking me a ton of questions or saying things to me to try and make me buy it. I mean I get it. This is how people make their living and as a person from a third world myself I respect the hustle, but sometimes I just want to browse and decide on my own.

Nonetheless we ended up getting some real good items to bring back to America. Some of the vendors actually take credit cards, but most only take cash. We ran out of cash at one point in time so we had to go to a local ATM to get some more. Since Green Market Square is in a busy part of Cape Town finding an ATM was not hard at all.

 We purchased kente clothe bags, necklaces, cups, dashikis, key chains, and so much more. Here are just some of the items that we purchased. Unfortunately I did not think to take any pictures of Green Market Square myself (still trying to get use to documenting everything) but I went ahead and googled some images of the square so that you could get the idea of what it was like.

Aiming for a life of Minimalism

At the end of 2015, I moved back  home to the Washington DC from Portsmouth, Virginia. While I was packing I realized that I had TOO many things. Too many unworn items of makeup, shoes, and mostly…too many pieces of clothing. As I packed up all my things I was extremely overwhelmed by the amount of clothes and shoes that I had. Clothes in the closet, the drawer, under my bed, in my car trunk, and in my storage unit. Some of the items were things I wore once, things that I bought just because, and things that  I was just too lazy to send back. I realized then that I wanted to strive for a life of minimalism. I just had way too many things and I wanted to try to eliminate as much junk inside of my home as I was trying to eliminate within myself.

I could have just given a mass amount of my clothes away to the Good Will or Salvation Army, but I didnt want my clothes being added to a mound of clothes that is sent overseas to pile up on the side of the road somewhere (this is actually toxic to locals). So I decided that I was going to sell as many items as I could on Poshmark. Poshmark is an app that allows you to take pictures of your clothes, write a description about it, set the price that you want for the item, and sell it.

My Poshmark site

I also decide to stop buying so many clothes. We all have our vices. We all have the things that make us feel better, mine has always been buying things. Having a new outfit that someone could compliment me on was one of the things that made me feel better when I was down. Obviously this is not the best tactic in searching for peace and comfort so I decided to enforce a spending freeze on myself unless I absolutely needed it.This has been the hardest thing, but this past year I have been doing really well sticking to this plan!

The last thing that I decided to do was start wearing my old clothes again. You know how it is, we wear something for a season, discard it and never pick it back up again. Well this is something that I decided to stop doing. I have decided to start wearing my clothes until they run down and must be thrown away rather than just replacing it with a newer version just because.  I cant tell you how satisfying it was for me to start back wearing an old shirt that I had purchased in 2011, and wearing it until the sleeve tore. I know this sounds super janky BUT if all of us began buying clothes only when we really needed them just think of how much money we would save a year.

Now that 2017 is approaching I am hoping that I can continue my journey to minimalism and eliminating the unnecessary out of my life. I am hoping that all of this will assist me in decreasing my materialistic ways and continue down the path of financial freedom, gratitude, and appreciation.