In general, the perception over this kind of outdoor shops could not have been less positive. Nationals’ mentality regarding Pakistani people who sell illegal products has not strengthen the attitude of the local societies towards the migrant population. Conversely, Pakistani experience a generalized racist perception of inferiority and ethnic depreciation.
I approached one of the shop owners, looked him in the eyes and asked him in my mother language, if he could provide me with a mobile charger, in a generalized atmosphere of suspicion and incredulity. He took me by surprise, when he asked me to indicate the specific model. He would search for it, for that he kindly requested that I wait a minute. “Does it really work?”, I added with an apparent irony. “If it does not work, please come back tomorrow and I will give you a new one, a better one. I will remember you”. He made a demonstration of the new charger and surprisingly enough, it worked.
That man, a foreigner with absolutely no qualifications for the national bureaucratic system, made me feel embarrassed. I left him with a smile and I thanked him twice. He smiled back, as if he had forgiven my racist attitude. In a duration of five minutes, I bought two things: A charger and dignity. Or maybe not. Dignity has no price.