They’re not your average pavement or roadside hawker. Fender vendors are the brave souls who dodge cars at busy traffic intersections every day, braving the elements, risking death or injury to make a meagre sale. It is impossible to miss them on your daily commute to work on weekdays or when going out anywhere on weekends. They have no holidays, every Sunday is a workday.
There are the regulars at every intersection. The faces become familiar over time. Amazingly, most even recognise regular passing motorists and wave cheerfully, hoping to make a sale. Most have a cheerful disposition and are really friendly. In fact, it is a pleasure to see a cheerful face as you crawl through traffic, and notice that your fellow motorists are decidedly glum-looking. What a disgrace to also watch how some motorists wave the vendors away rather impolitely. I have had occasion to witness motorists rebuke these vendors and utter vulgar insults as well.
I know that these vendors are considered a nuisance and a many motorists would dearly love to see them removed from the intersections. Considering the sea of crime engulfing the country, South African motorists probably consider these vendors as a threat. Given there may be a small criminal element among them who have been known to conduct smash-and-grab raids on vehicles, the majority are honest individuals just trying to make an honest buck. There is no need for paranoia. So what if some of them are peddling items, that you would normally purchase only from a licenced retailer. They don’t have economics degrees. They will soon enough realise that they need to switch to stock that sells.
Let’s give them a break and some support from time to time. And you don’t have to buy any of the illegal stuff…unless you want to.