I probably have the worst game plan for the farmers market. I see others who clearly have plans and are on a mission. I am not nearly as together as they are and I am sure it reflects in the total amount that I pay for things. I start out wanting to walk up the main row to check out the prices and then decide who has the best prices and produce but it never really ends up that way. It is hard to keep 30+ vendors straight in your head when you just want to get some yummy produce. Plus I was totally distracted by the fact that all I could think about was getting some fresh squeezed lemonade.
We walked up the first part of the main row and I finally gave up trying to find the best price for strawberries. Everyone had them and the prices were all over the place. To make matters worse I made the mistake of looking at the flyer's before we went so I knew that strawberries (from the US) were on sale for $1 this week. So as we walked by booths I couldn't help but look at the prices and think about the number of additional strawberries I could get for that price if I bought them at the grocery store. I will admit it did make me question if we should buy some or just go to the grocery store and get them for cheap. But all it takes is one look at the local strawberries and the decision becomes very easy. Nothing can compare to the taste of a local Ontario strawberry. So while I may not have gotten as many berries today I got the best of the best.
After picking up our strawberries we went on the hunt for the rest of the items on our list. We hit a booth we normally shop at and picked up peppers and tomatoes. Prices were fantastic and the produce was all local. As I was paying I could hear the vendor across from them yelling our about their corn. This booth pisses me off every time we go because their prices are so frickin low. But you see they are not selling local produce...they are selling imported produce. Basically it is the grocery store in the market. We skip them every single time because it is imply not the booth we want to support. I do have to wonder if the people shopping there realize that they are not buying local.
Some of the booth operators have made it easy to determine if we want to buy from them. They clearly indicate where their food is coming from. Some are even going to the extent of saying how many kilometers their farm is from the market. That is why we bought our sweet peas from one vendor. Yes they were more expensive but their farm was less than 10km from the market.
When we finished walking the main aisle we had bought strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, sweet peas, asparagus, lettuce and green onions. I made a beeline for the fresh squeezed lemonade and then we circled around past the million vendors selling Crocs, sheets and As Seen on TV products. We wandered by the scary clowns who were making balloon spidermen and headed back towards the truck to head home.
I have pretty much been eating strawberries ever since (there are some sitting in my wine glass right now). I have no regrets about spending three times the amount on strawberries today because these one's are the kind that when you bite into them your eyes roll back into your head and you wish that you could just marry it and have its babies.
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