Saturday, April 13, 2013

market day

I dragged my still-croaking voiced body downtown this morning to the farmer’s market. Every Saturday morning, streets are blocked off for the event with a festival air. Police direct traffic as streams of locals, snow birds and visitors stroll past a myriad of vendors in search of a deal. Serious shoppers roll carts, while others parade their pets—dogs, birds and often a reptile or two—sip lattes, fresh coconut milk or guzzle down a wide variety of junk or ungodly healthy foods. 

Me—I mostly come for the theater. I learned the hard way that “deals” are rare. How many farmers’ markets sport a cash machine? A short walk over to Whole Foods usually brings better prices. There isn’t even a guarantee that all the stuff is local. Farmers’ markets have become big business. So I make my rare purchases carefully.

 Ah, but the people watching--of customers and vendors--is more than worth the price of admission, so to speak. I drop a $1 into the case of a twangy street performer, passing closely by a couple of VERY drag queens handing out fliers. I don’t stop of get one so I haven’t a clue.  Another buck goes to a feed- the-hungry local charity. It seems inexcusable not to make a small contribution in the midst of such abundance.

There are stalls of beauty pageant produce, seedy looking organic choices, grass-fed beef, seafood, flowers, green drinks, sugary slushes, crafts, clothing, organic olive oils, teas, soaps and skin care, gluten/non-gluten pastries and pastas, herbs, rain barrels, fire pits ….etc. etc. For $15, you can get a chair massage. This almost catches me.

I give myself permission to violate all my dietary restrictions yet only buy a cappuccino. Odd. My tummy is still a bit outta sorts. So I pass up the yummy looking/smelling grouper sandwiches, “authentic” Argentine empanadas, egg & steak breakfasts, scones, and the like.

It’s a pleasant enough way to pass the time.

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