Frankincense is typically used for two things, fragrance and memory. You either place it on charcoal to allow the smoke bring fragrance.
Students and others consume it to improve their memory preservation skills. Besides the Qur’an, many other texts are memorized. For this you can chew it like gum or leave it in a glass of water for sometime, and then drink it.
I asked the shopkeeper a few things and then asked ‘how much per kilo for the forgetful one?’
He took a while.
‘Mmm…Allahumma Solli ala Sayyidina Muhammaaad…aaaa…’
‘You forgot? ’ (He missed the joke.)
‘YR3,000 per quarter kilo and another type YR5,000. (To my surprise) Well, yea there’s a cheaper one but it’s useless!’
There is a way about how people here do business. They do have the sales pitch as well as bargain, but that doesn’t say much about what’s at principle level. Perhaps to illustrate, I’ll tell you now in another two anecdotes.
One. Go home USD.
Due to the war, the Yemeni Rial currency has been decreasing. For USD100 it is these days YR33,000 to YR36,000. A few days ago, it dropped to YR30,000 (for an expected day or two) and so happens a friend had to get some rials. This situation benefits the money changers.
However, all three they turned him away. They told him ‘this is not a good day for you. Keep the money and come back in a few days.’
Two. No good taps.
At three shops I told them, I’m looking for a good kitchen tap. Two told me none and another told me he has one that could be good but can’t be sure – so no.
Occurrences are one matter. But what is the meaning?
For the people here as purchasers, it says a few things about their position towards buying and products.
For the shopkeepers, I suppose it’s not too far of a stretch to say, that this is how the people who are God conscious do business, not self conscious.