Sunday, August 25, 2013

Farmers Market

Yesterday we managed to get the kids' bikes ready for use. Then, of course, Alex wanted to ride her bike immediately. She put on her bike helmet and on it stayed for a good half hour, until we told her it had to come off because we had to run an errand in the car (getting the Subaru titled in MD). When we got home we also remembered the Rockville farmer's market on Saturday mornings and quickly came up with the plan that, we thought, would cover all bases.

We grabbed some snacks and water, bags, the wagon, Alex's bike, and some bungee cords. Some SNAFUs along the way: Alex decided she didn't want to ride the bike after 2 blocks and the first few attempts of bungee didn't pan out; the route we walked ended up involving a massive detour as there was no way to cross 355 at the point where we reached it. But we got the hang of things.

Some thoughts on the farmers' market. In my previous experience - entirely in Pennsylvania - farmer's markets are a place to buy your produce directly from the farmer, where you can chat with the farmer, find out where the farm is and what their practices are and - most importantly for the consumer - pay a discounted price due to the cutting out of twelve layers of middlemen. Not here. Goodness, the prices are crazy high. Like the cheapest items cost around grocery store levels.

Not that it stopped us from buying, of course, because the stuff was local and largely if not entirely organically grown.

And then we saw them. The Amish/Mennonites who came down from Pennsylvania to sell their pork, lamb and who knows or cares what else to the Marylanders. Pennsylvania lamb!! Terry and I started concocting the recipes on the spot. It will involve creating rosemary infused olive oil with fresh rosemary that is flourishing in our yard next to the sadly dying mint (what the heck? We once experienced a pot of mint living 2 months in a storage unit. I am very disappointed in this wimpy specimen). So, we will be back with the insulated grocery bag and some ice packs. Cookies sweetened the walk back, as well as the slight down incline that let Alex ride her bike a good portion of the way.

To finish the day, we grilled our antibiotic-laden, forcibly-grain-fed supermarket beef with pesticide-and-GMO-free corn and roasted some local potatoes covered in parsley from our garden. We paired it with beer from Utah (which gives me such a kick) and it happens to be organic too although I didn't notice that when I bought it. It was a good night.

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