Bargain Hunting!…by JoAnn

A bunch of yard sale signs that are all different colors

Last weekend I had the pleasure of doing something that I live for.  Bargain hunting!  This time by way of yard sales.  Just the mere thought of going “Yard Selling” makes me giddy.   They are my all-time favorite type of sale.  I don’t know why exactly.  Maybe it’s in my blood.  

My mother would get just as excited as me.  After my dad’s retirement, they spent every weekend going to yard sales.  My mama had an eye for collectibles and antiques.  Pretty soon she had out buildings stuffed with the treasures she had found at rock bottom prices.  They collected so much in fact, that they decided to go into the flea market business.  It was a wonderful past time in their later years, that kept them out and about and on their toes.  They met a lot of new people, and ran into many old friends they hadn’t seen in years.  In turn, they made a nice little profit for themselves.  However most importantly, it made my mama happy.

Like my mother, I have never seen a yard sale or thrift store that didn’t interest me.  My mind will not be at rest until I see for myself what hidden treasure or bargain lies within.  Also like my mother, I only buy at low prices.  That is the key.  It has to be a bargain or it’s not fun.  

Many times, I have walked away from a yard sale only spending a few dollars.  But have in my hands items that I either really needed and paid only pennies for, or I’ve found a treasure worth at least triple what I paid for it.  Those are the kind of yard sales every fan searches for.  

Last weekend I found two such sales.  The first one ran by a man, who by judging his inventory, is in the flea market business.  Usually the prices are too high at this type of sale.  But what caught my eye, and made me hit my brakes, was the huge “1/2 OFF EVERYTHING” sign at his curb!  I found many much-needed household items for a grand total of $4.50.  I walked away feeling a little guilty that I hadn’t helped this nice man rid his yard of the overabundance of collectibles.  But I knew my small home had no room for them.  It was a shame though.  He had excellent regular prices.  Take 1/2 off and there were bargains galore!  I went back to my car feeling very content though with items I actually needed.   

The second yard sale was an entirely different type.  This one was a hodgepodge of items from A to Z.   However, this sale quickly became much more than a simple bargain hunt.  As I began talking with the woman having the sale, it was apparent that we had a lot in common.  The more we chatted, the more I liked Sheila.    

I found out both her parents had passed after she spent years caring for them from this house, also her childhood home.  I found out her parents had also been flea market people just like mine.  And that she had grown up doing yard sales and the flea market circuit right along with them.  I also found out my new acquaintance has a chronic illness which gives her a lot of pain and fatigue, as do I.  

We must have talked for a good 45 minutes as we sat in the shade on this hot, August day.  I didn’t want to end our most pleasant conversation, but the heat was getting to both of us.  We ended with a “let’s stay in touch”, and an exchange of names so we could connect on Facebook. 

I did buy several bargains from my new friend, around $3 worth.  But I walked away with the most precious treasure of all, a new friend.