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In Iraq, generous Mideast tradition of ‘istiftah’ lives on

As the sun rises over Arbil's historic bazaar, shopkeepers sweep their stoops and eagerly await the "istiftah" -- the first customer of the day, believed to be a good omen. The first customer of the day gets to name his or her price for the goods or service being purchased, without the usual process of haggling and compromise that is quintessential to street markets.

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