Ahead of any big day celebrations, there will always be many 'seasonal traders'. Traders who specialise in selling only at certain times. For example, around Chinese New Year in Petak Sembilan there are lots of traders selling Chinese New Year knick-knacks and other special items. One of these seasonal traders sells tablecloths with a red and gold pattern typical of Chinese New Year.
Hello Pak, these tablecloth colours are great, what time did you start selling them today?
Yeah, I've been here since early this morning.
And do you sell tablecloths every day?
Oh no, this is only if there is a holiday of some kind. Whether it's the Muslim Eid holiday or Chinese new year like this.
So what do you usually sell? On a daily basis I sell household furnishings. Why did you choose to start selling additional items only for the holidays? Because if you're selling these tablecloths and have some left over, you can still save them until another time, even until next year. These are all general motifs, right, there is no specific zodiac sign like you might find on clothes, for example, so there is no waste as a seller. If there is a zodiac sign, it can't be sold again next year.
How long have you been trading?
It's been a long time, 15 years maybe.
Have you sold a lot so far?
Not yet. It's been really quiet since the pandemic.
Is it different from last year?
It's very different. Sometimes my profits are down up to 70%. Usually in a week everything is sold, but it's only four days now until Chinese new year and I've still not sold much.
Where do you get this cloth from, Pak?
Oh, well, I bought this myself at the morning market with my own capital. I'm an independent reseller basically. It's a good business if you can just buy and sell straight away.
Where are you from, Pak? How long will you be here selling?
I'm from Kuningan, most of the time I trade until 6 pm, but when it's close to D day, sometimes it's late at night. I live near here, in Pengkuran so I can go home pretty easily by taking the bus.
Oh, okay Pak, I hope it sells quickly. Stay safe and healthy!
Yes you're welcome, thank you.