From L-R: One
of the numerous rolling stores in Makati; The variety of goodies for the
hungry stomach; Manang Suzy enjoying the luxury of space in the make-shift
sari-sari store; Healthful, cheap and delicious packed lunch amidst the
kalderos and the styro; Office people in Makati wait in line eagerly for
their share of noontime treats.
by: Melissa Jane Laurel
When I tell people I work in Makati, the first thing they comment about is the
expensive lifestyle I have to live, considering that "lunch" would probably mean
eating in a mall or some building's cafeteria and spending about P80.00 per meal.
But come to think of it, only in our country's biggest business district can I
buy lunch worth P30.00 that can give me a full stomach. All this from a nomadic
Right beside our office sits 3 rolling stores. We
call it a rolling store because it is situated by the sidewalk of the streets
in Makati, not in a booth, but in an automobile. It is actually a van converted
into a shop of all sorts, or what is more popularly known as a "sari-sari store,"
but sells mostly food.
It's amazing how you can see what Pinoys can do to earn money. You'll be surprised
about the way they converted a vehicle into some venue for business. They added
in some contraption that served as a small table holding pots and pans containing
lunch viands, small shelves with sandwiches, junk food and other snacks.
An ordinary van won't let you stand erect inside, but this even has high shelves that contain
other necessities for their primary market, those employees working in the area,
such as sanitary napkins, bathroom tissues and the like. The vendors manning their
stores can still move freely inside, with space for 2 more people.
The goods they sell are also easy on the pocket. Lunch pack costs from about P30 to P45, complete
with 2 viands (one meat and one vegetable), double rice (meaning 2 cups of rice)
and a banana for dessert. Chow for merienda is also available, with choices like
banana-cue, spring rolls (or lumpiang gulay), halo-halo and all kinds of junk
food you can imagine. (Too bad for those on a diet.) Not only is the food cheap,
it tastes good, too.
Such creative way to earn a living. I'm sure they sell a
lot, because employees from the area swarm these roving sari-sari stores, especially
during lunch time. In fact, we make it a point to buy our lunch as early as 11:15
AM because when 12:00 strikes, there will be too many people crowded around the
stores, as if some celebrity is there signing autographs.
Now when people ask me where
I work, and they comment about the expensive lifestyle I have to live, I
just tell them about these rolling stores and they just smile. Where else
can you find such a spectacle? Again, only in the Philippines.
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