So I am trying to type this rather quickly. Because the adapter of my Macbook Pro is dead and the battery only has a couple of hours left on it.
I went to a shop in Hamra (because I can walk there) yesterday and asked how much does the adapter cost for the Mac. Two guys were inside the shop. One of them has such a dry face. If I can pay him to smile I would have done that, except I wouldn’t have. The other younger one was trying to be friendly. But laziness and dullness is pretty contagious I think. I asked if he would like to see the laptop or the adapter, to know exactly what I need. Dullface said, “laptop”. friendly said, “Adapter.” But apparently dull is the boss. He ordered friendly to show him the laptop again, not the adapter. I took out the laptop and friednly wanted to take it closer to Dull, who quickly announced: 15-inch. Ok. (My laptop is 17-inch. Just FYI)
He said the adapter will cost 160,000 Lebanese Pounds, which is a little more than 100 USD. I didn’t like the price because I had been at the shop few weeks earlier and they sold me something at a very high price (way higher than apple store in the US). So I weighed my options and said okay. When can I collect it?
He checked his system and said, in a week’s time. I figured I can borrow the adapter from Bayan when I can to charge my laptop and enjoy a week without much online time. I asked if he is sure of the price. He said let me check it and came back with a slightly more expensive one, “140 Dollars.” What?? I usually don’t say much while buying stuff, but this time I told him, “Wait. Don’t order it”.
140 Dollars for an adapter didn’t sound very right to my ears. I went home and checked the price of the piece on Apple store. This is it: http://store.apple.com/us/product/MC556LL/B and its price is 80$ with free shipping. This is for consumers not for dealers.
So for this piece of, ahem, artistry to sell at 140$ in Beirut means one of two things: Either the seller is a thief, or our state is a thief. Of course it could be the most likely option that they are both thieves. Earlier this week my brother came home from his middle school with a paper saying his tuition fees for this year (the one about to end) have increased one thousand dollars(!!) Our government increases the prices of things, adds salaries of some employees in the public domain, and leaves its people to suffer. Our government, I am pissed at our government -in case that is not clear yet- still discusses the same issues the government of 1992 used to discuss in its weekly meetings: public debt, electricity problems, high prices, inflation, communication problems, etc…
And today after we returned from our small village in Bekaa, my sister Bayan said that the people have blocked the international Beirut-Damascus road which leads there to express their anger at the rising fuel prices. The people are missing the point. This is our only breathe outside, allow us at least 0’people to take it in a place where we may actually find some real air.