A gentleman at this weekend's farmers' market asked me "How long do you think farmers' markets have been around?" I thought about it a minute and replied, "I would guess they've been around as long as there has been farmers." He raised his eyebrow at me and said, "I suppose so." It was a simple enough exchange on the surface, but it left me pondering the question.
Where I hadn't given it much consideration before, I realized "the market" really is a long-held tradition for farmers, craftsman, and artisans to exchange goods, and I love being part of that tradition. It is a more personal exchange compared to shopping at the big-box stores, and it impacts the community in a way big-box stores can't. Where else can you meet the person who grew your onions or made the bowl you put your soup in or the brownie you lose yourself in? While all shopping venues serve a purpose and a need in each community, whether it is creating jobs, providing services, or selling goods, it is the local business owners and the one-on-one contact between producer and consumer that gives the experience more heart. It is also very nice to meet the consumer face to face, to shake their hand, and to hear their stories, an aspect of the market I am enjoying quite a bit.
Passing on news and occasional ponderings.