At home, and in many parts of the world, it’s called Craigslist.
Need a babysitter? Craigslist! Need to rehome your dog? Craigslist :( Need to sell your 1980s Starwars figurine to pay the power bill? You know where to go.
In Macau we have Facebook groups.
( This is the part where I actually give some real information on Macau that might help someone new, before I get to the part that will not help you adjust to life in Macau what so ever. Or maybe it will.)
(named after a Cirque show that got the quick boot, it was meant to help performers and technical staff unload things quick, not all of Macau uses it.)
Macau Swap and Trade
If you want to go old school:
The lesser utilized 12×12 cork board at Cuppa Coffee
The soon to be very useful Community Corner at The Blissful Carrot
And the for the “no time to dilly dally” option:
Hong Kong Expat
On HongKong Expat if you’re willing to travel over by ferry you might be able to grab some more elusive scores. Antique furniture, a fancy coffee maker, a hedgehog. Really, exotic animals are hot! Or like our ever hustling friends, The Randles do, take a dolly with you and grab a few industrial stoves, cases of wine, or another better dolly to put on the dolly to later carry back more and bigger things from our hipster sibling country to the north.
On these delightful pages you can find concert tickets, helpers, or a lovely Philippino lady selling Angry Birds cupcakes that might or might not look like Pinterest fails.
Although we are close to mainland, the mother of all factories, we are separate from them in every way. Appliances specifically can go for two times the price here than in the States. Things get cleared off the shelves quickly when they come in. When winter approaches there’s serious scrapping for oil heaters. Summer brings squabbles over fans and dehumidifiers. If you have kids then you definitely watch these sites for Western imported items: strollers, cribs, that ridiculous bouncing thing that your little person is only going to use for a month. Why? Because let’s just say some of the materials and safety standards here are…debatable. But then so is the term “used”. My favorite disagreements are about how something can be “85% new!” Somebody’s going for the hard sell on that shoe rack.
While not all the postings on sites like Craigslist are always vanilla, but when they are, let’s say, chocolate , there is usually creative word play involved. Puns. Code words. Certainly There cannot be that many girls named Mary Jane and Molly Cyrus all wanting to meet up tonight?
So when this popped up in the middle of my Facebook feed between funny animal videos and breast feeding articles (how does Facebook know??), I completely cracked up.
There are moderators on these pages that crack down on the most trivial things like Facebook hall monitors. May lightening strike you for bargaining in a foreign language. You can be kicked off the list if the picture of your ikea end table is one from the catalogue and not your actual table. And sayonara to the barterer who tries to haggle with a private message and somehow, Danny Rex slipped through the cracks?
While I admire Danny Rex’s entrepreneurial spirit, and while Macau is not really the most conservative country, currently rebranding itself as Asia’s Sin City, it certainly isn’t this progressive. They most certainly have very strict drug laws above almost any other offense. Not Singapore strict, but I most certainly would not want to spend the night next to old Broken Tooth Koi of the Triads out in Coloane. ( I might have just risked assassination by just dropping the name of the Scarface of the East.)
Wondering if there was a punch line, I read on, and also thought, where was Facebook in college? No walking around campus looking for “some guy named Dan with a beard”.
I also thought it was pretty funny considering that when a post comes up for something as trivial as a bread maker, there can be an all out bidding war with twenty comments and on this post it was crickets. I know. I checked back because I was dying for someone to take the bait. Did people smell a trap? Did no one want to sleep under Broken Tooth’s bunk? Did they already have “a guy named Dan with a beard”?