Touristy Shit: The Panjiayuan Antique Market
I know that when most people go to cities — especially Asian cities — they want to go to the markets. I’ve recently decided that I detest shopping. So markets aren’t exactly the place for me.
The only time I ever really enjoyed a market experience was in Chiang Mai, where everything cost 20 cents. Buying shit there was sort of like gambling at the 25 cents blackjack machines in a casino. You feel like even if you’ve made some terrible decision, who gives a shit, because the worst thing that can happen is that you end up accidentally losing a quarter. On the plus side, you have a present for a friend you would have never otherwise bought a present for.
But most markets aren’t as cheap as I’d like them to be. They make me anxious. I don’t like spending money. I feel like I always make the wrong decisions. I pull the trigger too quickly, and by the time all of my cash is gone, I find the one thing I’d really wanted all along. Most of the time, when I go to markets, I just take pictures.
At the Panjiayuan market in Beijing, I lost some of my self control.