Sunday, 30 August 2009

Born to sell?

Is the Pope catholic?

Are the Kennedy's gun shy?

Does a bear sh*** in the woods?

Do Azeries enjoy selling?

Oh, yes.

I totally enjoyed the car boot sale today. The thrill of selling some really silly things is only second to buying some really silly things.

My mother said I was getting ready as if I were a soldier going to war. But I was nervous, you know. I am not really a sales person. I had never sat there in front of people, selling stuff. I heard you arrive early in the morning, and professional traders loom over you, rummaging in your boxes, intimidating and confusing you into giving things away for nothing.

However, I had an overwhelming desire to de-clutter. And, once I decided to get rid of the endless amount of useless stuff tucked away in all the dark corners of my house, nothing could stop me. My eyes constantly swept around, analyzing and evaluating.

“No!”- Husband said occasionally, catching me staring at yet another piece of junk he has kept for years. I found things I forgot we had. I found things that were just some really tasteless presents or pointless purchases, old baby toys that would not fit in the attic and… some very unfortunate paintings from back home.

Yes, I am embarrassed I ever purchased those. I know I am supposed to have some understanding of art, having spent 6 years studying architecture. It is just like enjoying Twilight- you know it is bad, but can’t stop. My only excuse is that I had purchased those whilst pregnant in Baku, my mind overpowered by hormones. I thought they were beautiful.

So I packed everything in boxes, prepared extra change and a pasting table, and was there at 7am today.

People who come to car boot sales are so fascinating. There was a punk who wanted to buy husband’s old camera. There was a very fat tattooed man who bought the Kazakh sleepers. There was an old lady who was after some cheap old jewelery. A very artistic young man was thrilled about my old sofa throw for £1. I made so many people happy, and returned with decent cash earned from something I was ready to throw away. People buy some really weird stuff. I sold an opened bottle of bath soak and some very tacky tablecloths given to me by Azeri relatives when I got married.
I can almost hear my house sigh with relief.

But my paintings….

My lovely fake Renoir, and the peaceful scenes of the Azeri countryside came back home with me. Maybe I was not ready to let them go. Maybe the fake Renoir with a crooked vase reminds me of the happy days when I was expecting my baby girl. And perhaps, I just need that little bit of Azeri countryside in my English home. I decided to re-frame them and hang them up anyway. (Husband does not know yet.)


  1. well done! i'm just about to eBay a whole bunch of my designer handbags, shoes and clothes! must be the pregnancy thing.

  2. What has Husband said after reading this? ;)
    Here in Peru this kind of sales is not usual. When you want give away all the things you won't use, you can call any of the groups that recollect all the stuff and then distribute them with needy people.

  3. @Gabriela: Yes, there is always a charity option, but sometimes selling stuff can be fun.
    Husband does not read the blog.

    @Sharon: send me your link please! :)

  4. Well done. I never manage to get to car boot sale... I packed lots of things to be sold on e-bay and ended up giving away most of them... Must learn to sell... x

  5. It's ages since I did a car boot (I think the last one was when we moved house and decluttered). Sounds like you had fun. But what did you BUY?

  6. @WM: Believe it or not, I was happy not to buy anything. To be honest, people sell some shocking junk! But my mother, of course is a different story....she picked up a book (10p)and a bunch of sponges(20p)!!! She was thrilled. :)

  7. The painting actually looks nice, so maybe it's a good thing it didn't sell. At any rate, I'm sure in 50 years your daughter will be able to fetch a few thousand pounds for it :-)

    I am one of the few Azeri men who hate selling stuff, so we never participate in neighborhood garage sales. Never shop there, either, because it is so addictive... You can end up with a truckload of junk in no time.

  8. Way to go, girl! (I meant that for the fact that you KEPT the paintings!!!)

  9. Nice posting :))
    Here in US it is called garage sale or yard sale.
    You just open your garage door and put your stuff on your driveway.
    Sometimes it takes 2-3 days.
    But you know what? I got my absolutely new $500) bike on garage sale for 50 bucks!