The Church of the Farmers’ Market

Posted: July 23rd, 2006 | Author: | Filed under: Husbandry | No Comments »

Last Sunday we went to the kick-off of a new year-round farmers’ market that’s a four block walk from our house. The place was packed with the cute white nuclear families that comprise our neighborhood. And can you blame them? I can think of no better way to spend a Sunday morning.

Going to a farmers’ market is like tripping on ecstasy for me. It makes me so damn happy. I love it.

First, you’ve got other people in an outdoor setting, and usually on a sunny day. This sets the baseline for bliss. Other humans for me to interact with, warm weather, and not feeling cooped up in the house.

Then you’ve got all the crap to look at: fruit, veggies, soaps, jams, musicians, fresh fish, smoked fish, organic meat, thai food, baked goods, orchids–you name it. Feast your eyes! And having Kate in the Ergo pack kicking her chubby legs with glee and reaching and pointing to it all is the manifestation of what I’d do myself if it wasn’t so socially unacceptable for someone my age. Kate leans out from her roost on my (or Mark’s) chest and frenetically points to piles of broccoli, other babies, blenders churning up smoothies. She greets it all (human and inanimate) with the occaisional ardent “ba-bye,” her version of “aloha.” It works for the coming and going.

Nearly every vendor has samples to share. (Did they get this idea from Costco, or did Costco get it from them?) Strawberries, wedges of nectarines–last week they were even passing out paper cups of pureed organic baby food. And the kettle corn vendor has samples too! Damn that stuff is good. I made my way through a huge sleeve of kettle corn so obsessively and hypnotically once that Mark had to wrench it from my hands while speaking slowly and calmly to me.

And the tasting thing is perfect for a guy like Mark. I take a taste of whatever and love it and just want to buy some then and there. But Mark takes a taste and holds his emotions at bay. “Yeah, it’s good, but I want to try some other ones.” He moves along to the next peach vendor to compare notes. “Nope. These won’t really be ready until next week.” Like a puppy dog I follow along behind him while licking my fingers? “Really? Seems good to me now.” What amazes me is his ability to remember not only what stall had the best peaches and where it was, but he also remembers the varietal. (Who knew there were so many?) I’m just too drunk on the whole sunny scene to make my brain work that hard.

So it’s Sunday morning. Kate is taking her nap and Mark is riding his bike. When she wakes up and he gets back we’ll slap on some sunscreen, grab an empty canvas bag, and make our way over to the action. Some people choose church. For me, it’s the farmers’ market.

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