Street Vendors

A couple of photographers heading into a crowd at jazz street festivalMy favorite souvenir from my time abroad is a silver ring I bought from a street vendor in Pisa.  It’s a bendy snake-like ring that has so far survived 10 years of bending, twisting and daily wear.  It’s a funky piece that reminds me every day of the adventures I had while backpacking through Europe.   As you traverse the streets of your new found home abroad and nearby cities, you may find that street vendors can be quite pushy.  While backpacking I quickly learned to keep my hands in my pockets, my mouth shut, and to avoid eye contact when passing through the touristy parts of towns.  I also quickly learned, however, that these same street vendors can offer souvenirs that you will never find elsewhere and knowing how to act in these crazy areas can mean the difference between getting a great bargain and finding yourself the proud owner of some very expensive junk.   Navigating pushy street vendors takes some know-how and this article gives some great advice on how to avoid the uncomfortable situations that can arise: http://www.frommers.com/articles/7487.html