MIDWAY : Dashain bonanza

It’s a shoppers’ paradise. Much like what famine-hit people do when food reaches their town through some benevolent international donors, Kathmanduites rush to snap up the best offers on the eve of Dashain.

Just a few weeks before the festival, streets and shopping centres around the capital get flooded with shoppers trying to lift the best buys and the shopkeepers trying to clear the old and new stocks through bumper sale offers. The motivation of the international donors in helping the flood-hit and our own shopkeepers’ offerings may vary, but Kathmandu denizens have little to worry about. As long as their wallets don’t run dry and the words ‘discount’, ‘sale’ and ‘buy-one-get-one-free’ are tagged on the items in their shopping lists, buyers have a whole lot to choose from and to indulge in a shopping frenzy.

Each year, the metropolitan city is awash with Dashain bumper offers, and it is the housewives who get the most excited. In light of the generosity husbands bestow on them during this festive time (one sari each Dashain is a premarital commitment, I guess), the showrooms offer a wide range of saris at attractive discounts. And when they have their hubbies accompanying them from a boutique in Kopundol to a mall in New Road to an exotic showroom in Bagbazar, they certainly know they are gonna have the best bet this year.

But with such a broad range of choices, wives occasionally might find it hard to make the right decision. She will ask the shopkeeper for the latest designs. But as soon as she sees someone close a deal on orange ‘French chiffon’, she changes her mind. While the wife goes through the umpteen saris on offer, hopping from one variety to the other, one colour to the next, the husband can be spotted checking his watch, only to discover that he has been in the same shop for the last hour. And ultimately when the man reminds his better half of her other shopping lists, she ends up buying the same item she first set her eyes on.

Not to be outdone, newspapers and other media give a whole lot of publicity to these festive offers, and to a common man, like you and me, things can get confusing. Meanwhile, why not go and grab it, whatever!