No matter how you feel about them (my sentiments are mixed, as noted before), you gotta’ admire the ingenuity put forth by higglers across the Caribbean. Fences, laws, and various other barriers meant to keep them at bay continuously crop up, but they always seem to find ways to get to peddle their wares to the people.
Of all the higglers I’ve come across on my recent travels, this guy is my favorite.
I found him at Wahoo Bay, a cool little hotel above the sea in Haiti’s Côte des Arcadins resort area. This is one of the choicest spots to stay and play during the weekends for residents of Haiti’s bustling capital, Port-au-Prince, and its uptown offshoot, Petion-Ville.
While the older and more family-focused set is typically drawn to the seaside rest and relaxation at other Côte des Arcadins properties like Moulin Sur Mer and the Royal Decameron Indigo Beach Resort & Spa (formerly Club Med Haiti), the vibe at Wahoo Bay is decidedly younger, sexier, and tres-hip. This is especially true on Sundays when the resort hosts DJ parties featuring local and international artists.
So yeah, Wahoo’s a happening place, attracting visitors and locals alike. The kinda’ place a higgler would want to set up shop on a regular basis, but how?
My man here has got the answer, re-purposing a damaged old surfboard and pairing it with kayak paddles to form a floating store.
During my last Sunday stop at Wahoo a few months ago, this guy paddled up and down the beach all afternoon, always being careful to keep just far enough offshore for hotel guests to hear him and wade out his way in the event they were interested in buying.