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Well I'm converted. We just went to the local farmer's market. I've been ragging it since I first read about it in the local paper, what with there not being any farms within an hour and a half's drive of this place, but that was mostly just sour grapes because it's only on until 1PM and I haven't been well enough to get there.

BAck in the late 70's the "craft" market movement started on the urban/rural fringe and my family loved it. It was basically the same thing with more emphasis on craft. But not so much of the lame hand-painted clothes pegs, more of the serious cottage industry craft. Also plants and plenty of small food producers selling allegedly organic vegies through to cakes and olive oil and goat's cheese. And the markets we went to, down on the Peninsula, are still going strong and very much part of the local landscape.

So the markets are spreading again, now rebranded, although I have noticed it is mostly about food now. I assume there's a group/business that basically scouts around for cheap land hire and notifies it's members/shareholders and away they go. Low overheads, very sensible.

And by the looks of things, the 70's dream of the cottage industry really does work for a lot of people - they've found their niche through these outlets.

Suburbs like ours aren't set up for smallholders. We have the big supermarkets which end up sucking us all in whether we want them to or not, and smaller places that just can't compete. Just last night I was buying manky vegies from the ones who claim to be 'The Fresh Food People' and who should be done for false advertising and who have everything wrapped in plastic just in case you were feeling good about not using plastic bags, and who *really don't* have much of anything I actually want. Choice is minimal.

I doubt we've ever had dedicated market space in this area. But unfortunately, this also means our local farmer's market is not a bargain and never will be. This isn't Preston - everything here is all very boutique. You want bargains, you go to the supermarket where it won't be a bargain, but it won't blow the budget either. But you won't get to choose between bargain cheeses.

So it turns out our local farmer's market has a nice collection of stuff you won't get in the supermarket, including some specialty butchers which I'm hoping 10B will peruse next time.

I still wish we had a decent real market but yay for a bit more choice in what we buy.

And I bought rose and cardamom lassi. :-) Let's face it, I like this stuff and I don't care (and don't need) to be buying at rock bottom prices.


We also stopped by at the local garden club's street stall. A nice collection of deranged, (mostly) older women, maybe two about my age, so I got a membership leaflet. I coudln't help noticing they all seemed to laugh easily. Meeting older women like that always makes me regret I never joined a (nearby suburb's) Womens' Pipe and Drumming Band when I was healthy. It was advertised locally for years, and I suspect it would have brimming over with cheerful old nutjobs with bagpipes and no respect for council by-laws about noise.

Role models are important throughout life, I feel.

Yes, I bought a few plants. And a chocolate cake, since they happenned to have one.


I do seem to have done a lot of walking and going out these last few days don't I? Best put the tiara on and take it easy for the rest of today. I hope to go out tomorrow to sprawl in the living room of sjkasabi and MLM and feel hard done by and bitter because a bunch of people are off having a harvest festival/cooking day today, and in spite of my pleading I bet the good stuff will have all been consumed because our so-called friends are greedy pigs.

Still, the change of living room might be nice. And 10B will be in armour, with his trusty rattan sword, so maybe he can hit people for me.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 9th, 2009 04:58 am (UTC)
I always wanted to learn bagpipes, and am very sad to have learned that they are not a good idea for folks with dodgy lungs.

A change of living room every so often is good.

Should I re-consider that idea of homemade tiaras? I might be able to make them say things like "SOD OFF" in faux crystal.
May. 9th, 2009 05:23 am (UTC)
I want one!!

Oh - your tiara idea would be an ideal media for the "Self Rescuing Princess" slogan.
May. 9th, 2009 05:28 am (UTC)
Oh definitely. An image of a hand giving the finger would sell well, I feel.

And a market stall to sell them...no hang on...maybe use the internet...it's the craft market of the new millenium, after all.
May. 9th, 2009 05:14 am (UTC)
"manky vegies from the ones who claim to be 'The Fresh Food People' and who should be done for false advertising"

Yeah, fresh food my foot! Both times I've bought onions from them lately there has been a bad one amongst the bunch.
May. 9th, 2009 05:25 am (UTC)
I call my local Safeway fruit and veggie section "the compost heap". Seriously bleah!
May. 9th, 2009 11:33 am (UTC)
You sound good.
I don't think anything beats a local farmer's market for freshness and variety. Here in Spain daily markets are a tradition and while there is a lot of competition (and lower prices) from supermarkets, a lot of people still do fresh food shopping at the local places. And you get to know the butcher or your favourite fruit vendor and it's lovely.
May. 9th, 2009 12:39 pm (UTC)
Thanks, I'm not bad. :)

We used to have local markets around the place(or at least, we shopped at our local market when I was a kid) and suburbs like this used to have more active local shopping strips. (a la the British "High Street").

My childhood's local market is still going, but it's a bit too far away and unfortunately the farmers market thing is only once a month. So alas, we're still going to have a hard time avoiding the monolithic supermarket.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


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