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I Wouldn’t Go to the Trouble

Last week I was in Beijing and when I went shopping I wanted to get a couple watches I’d bought fixed. One needed to be sized, one ran slowly and the other, the most expensive ($50) had died two months after I got it. The first two I bought in March and the third I got at the Pearl Market and the third at the market behind it in the sub-basement.

While I don’t expect these watches to last forever, I do expect a $50 watch to last at least 4 months.

Getting the first two watches fixed was no problem. The shop owner was pleasant and obliging. So I wound up buying a couple gift watches to boot.

Then I went to get the third watch fixed. I would have been happy if the shop owners:

  1. fixed the watch
  2. gave me a new watch
  3. returned my money

I first looked at the watches that were just like mine and asked about the price to make sure it was worth $50. That was confirmed. Then I explained my problem. Rather than saying how they could make the situation better, the dour sales clerk asserted that I hadn’t bought the watch there. “You must have gotten the watch somewhere else.”

You’ve got to be kidding. I certainly don’t have the time or inclination to come to this shop to fix a problem with a watch i’d bought somewhere else. I told her I certainly bought it there. She kept insisting I’d gotten it somewhere else. I held my ground and eventually told her her claim was a lie. A tourist was browsing her wares as we went back and forth. He smiled knowingly and soon left.

Then this dour, unpleasant liar relented and her husband repaired the watch. It was easy for him. He just replaced the battery and now I’ve got a working watch. I’ll never go back there. If they had promptly fixed the watch I would have. I realize batteries die, but a new watch should come with a battery that’ll last a few months at least.

I later went to look at shoes before leaving. As I walked by the bad watch shop, I saw a group of six or so tourists heading towards the bad watch shop. I shared my story and told them about the good watch shop in the Pearl Market. I hope they went there. I did convince them not to shop with the bad watch shop.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. chava61
    Oct 04, 2015 @ 10:21:53

    I am glad that you were able to get the various watches fixed!

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    Reply

  2. Lingyun
    Oct 04, 2015 @ 12:39:00

    Oh man that’s brutal. I found that sometimes there was a fight like this when someone was trying to “save face”, and I’ve wondered on a few occasions if I’d missed some secret code that is supposed to tell me how to behave to get what I want, but then of course I’m sure there are just crooked people out there who will try and take advantage of tourists lack of knowledge. You have to be in the right frame of mind to shop in China, that’s for sure. I love the stores that treat you better every time you return, those are always the ones I recommend to other people!

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