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What A Wonderful World

During this year of the pandemic, Val and I have not been going to our beloved farmers market. We felt the sales were not worth the potential health risks, so elected to stay home and stay safe. This seemed appropriate until we harvested our garlic crop. We now found ourselves with 5,000 garlic to sell. We started accepting pre-paid orders to be delivered at market on Wednesday’s as this was the calmest of the three days the market is open. I could get in and get out so to speak, staying as safe as possible. This way we could still bring our garlic to grateful customers.

As it turned out, I was the only one in our section of the market each week. Oddly, this helped me feel safer. We now have a large crop of onions and soon an additional crop of potatoes that will need to be addressed. I felt safe enough to bring our soap products, my new cookbook and produce to market under these circumstances. After discussing this at length with Val, we decided to give it a try. It went without saying we could definitely use the capital.

What I didn’t expect when making this decision, was how good this was for me as a human being. My biggest challenge with this pandemic has been the loss of physical contact with people. I am a full fledged hugger. I now find eye contact has become extremely important. I am literally drawn to the eyes in an effort to communicate. You never know whether the connections you have forged in previous seasons will hold during a lengthy absence. To my surprise, not only did they hold, they were strengthened. There was such an outpouring of concern and welcoming. Customers and friends came with simple and heartfelt gifts. Jack brought a bouquet of flowers from his garden and some baba ganoush made with our garlic. Shalani, delivered a spice concoction and fresh limes, so we could make Indian Street Corn, Phil and Amy delivered a beautiful volume of poetry from David Whyte. Artwork from Isaac and Mathew. Muffins, quail eggs and plant starts from Brandon and Molly.  I drove home in deep humility and gratitude for the tapestry of our human family. With weft and woof, we cross each other’s lives in unexpected ways. It was such a testament to the relationships built throughout the years at market. It left me filled with hope going forward on this uncertain journey.

“Start each day with a positive thought and gratitude in your heart.” —Roy T. Bennett

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