Sunday, November 02, 2008

A Sunday Favorite

I love Sundays. They usually involve a nap and often include a book. They're quite and comforting.

My favorite thing about Sundays is that, on most Sundays throughout most of the year, I get to go to the farmers' market. I get up early, get dressed, grab my market basket and head out to experience the Baltimore Farmer's Market in all its glory. Walking from my car to the area beneath the I-83 overpass where the market is held, I can smell the cooking mini-donuts, popping kettle corn and brewing Zeke's Coffee. Entering the market, I am immersed in an ocean of sensory pleasures.

Cider and jams have replaced fresh peaches and berries. Apples are crisp and shiny. Pumpkins and squash abound. The last few peppers, zucchini and eggplant find homes. The bright yellows and reds and greens of early summer have been traded for the deep browns, purples and oranges of autumn. This time of year, the brightness of the foods is beginning to dull but the people are just as colorful. The farmers chat with customers about the weather, what they'll be planting next year and how they'll be spending their winter. No need to push a sale. Their produce sells itself.

While the choices are fewer, this is a great time to visit the market. Artisans and craftspeople peddle their creations to the pre-holiday shopping crowd. Root vegetables make my mouth water as I dream up recipes and imagine piles of roasted potatoes, beets and carrots on my plate. Jars of preserves tempt me to take home a reminder of the summer to get me through the cold months before fresh fruits and vegetables will return. Still, it's a sad sight watching the stacks of vegetables dwindle and knowing that in just a few weeks this area will be empty on Sundays, haunted only by the memory of market day.

For now, I hold tight to the weeks I have left with my Sunday love and enjoy every moment of my time at the market. I soak in the sights, sounds and scents, hoping that it will be enough to get me through the winter and into spring. It's only a few months, but it will seem like an eternity. My freezer will empty out and I'll be forced to return to the bright lights and high prices of the grocery store. I'll envy people living in warmer climates where the market stays open and active all year round. I'll dream of moving to one of these places.

And then it will be time again. Time to get up early on Sundays and visit my favorite market and my favorite farmers and bring home the products of their labor. I suppose a few months of rest for them is a small price to pay for fresh, locally grown produce.


Angie Ledbetter said...

Move here, move here! We're wayyyy warm most of the year an there are several nice farmer's markets here. One even handles wonderful dairy products along with the fruits and veggies.

Ami said...

That sounds fabulous! Where is here, again? I'm open to suggestions.

We have a dairy producer at our market, too. But I'm not much of a milk drinker so it hasn't been worth my money to buy there.

Angie Ledbetter said...

Baton Rouge, Louisiana. :)

bichonpawz said...

Wow! I felt like I was actually right there with you at the Farmer's Market! Great Post!

Melissa Amateis said...

What a lovely post. I could definitely "see" that market and I really wish I could visit!

We have a farmer's market here, but can you believe I have never been there once? I think it's because it's early on Saturday mornings and that is usually my day to sleep in. :-) Shameful, I know.

Ami said...

Angie - That's very tempting!

Bermudabluez - Thanks. It's a great market.

Melissa - I love the market so much that I don't mind getting up early. Go once and I bet you'll be hooked. You can always take a nap when you get back. :)

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