In a sort of panic, I went to Sandaga Market yesterday and started buying fabrics. I hear that the selection of fabric in Congo is not what it is in Senegal so I went from store to store getting some meters of this and that.
There are people who regularly walk around in the street with beautiful navy blue fabric and light blue tied-dyed patterns perched on their heads. I was always a little curious about that and asked a clerk in the store if she sold what those men were carrying. She answered (almost with a snarl) :"Madame, we don't sell fabric that's out in the street in here". I laughed, a trifle uncomfortably, at her snobbish answer.
I approached a man with the pieces of fabric on his head, not able to resist his warm smile. He sold me two of his prettiest pagnes (I'm sure I paid a lot more than the other customers but, oh well). He told me that they were traditional Guinean fabrics and that he himself was from Guinee. Ah, that would explain his huge smile (most Senegalese, although quite nice, do not spontaneously smile--unless they're trying to chat you up that is).
See Mrs. Store Clerk, no need to be such a snob about your fabric. Humpf!