Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Opening Day at the Farmer's Market!
The park was flooded with people; pedestrians and bicyclists alike. Flowers spilled out of backpacks and purses as if they’d sprouted amongst the wallets and checkbooks. Women, men and children carried wicker baskets full of vegetables, fresh bread, organic eggs and cured meats. Today was the first day of the Farmer’s Market.
I didn’t have much time. Mine was a quick jaunt between the library and work. But it was well worth the effort. My first stop was the nut vendor. Who can resist sweet and spicy almonds still warm in the bag? The spice hits first; a quick blaze followed by a sweet carmel crunch.
And then the counterpoint -- delectable sugar snap peas. As a general rule my children will not touch, much less put in their mouths, anything green. If a foodstuff remotely resembles a vegetable it is not to be eaten. Sugar snap peas, however, are the exception. They will be devoured with abandon straight out of the container.
I also could not resist a pint of deep red strawberries. I would have bought more were I not going to work. These perfectly ripe strawberries were ever so slightly soft and juicy and needed no embellishment. Tomorrow they’d have gone too far and be best in smoothies or muffins. But today ... just right.
Finally I bought a bushel of sweet pea flowers. The folks in front of me wondered if sweet peas were too humble a gift for their yuppie friends. ‘Tis true, sweat peas are a modest flower atop twisted vines. They beg for a simple vase - in my opinion nothing but a mason jar will do. But put a bushel of sweat peas in a mason jar and you have a glorious offering- fit for kings, yuppies or even us simple folk.
As I left the clouds were rolling in. A jovial older woman stopped to chat.
“Oh I hope we have thunder storms tonight.”
“Don’t worry,” I replied with conviction, “we most definitely will.”
I drove home to find a hula hoop laying in the front yard. Somehow it fit perfectly with the bucolic market. Then I meandered around back to share my snap pea tops with the chickens. They were blissfully clucking away unruffled by the distant thunder.
As much as I didn’t want to I readied for work. During the drive lightening cracked over the mountains - nature's fireworks. The rain began gushing down just as I pulled up. Our clinic doors leak so we piled towels high in the hallway and stared in awe at the onslaught. Secretly I wished the roof would leak too because there is something terribly romantic about the drip drip drip of rain into a tin can.
Alas, no roof leaks (be careful what you wish for, eh?). Work finally beckoned and I was forced to return to the “real world”. But you can bet your bottom dollar I’m going back to the Farmer’s Market next chance I get.