That is, if it weren't for the children of the corns.
You know who I am talking about, right? The people who wear sandals with socks, obviously because they have really sore feet or why else would you do that. The people who have nose hairs and carry reusable burlap grocery bags and stand around admiring turnips and making stupid comments like, ooh, Gerrard, would you look at how marvelous this cucumber is, and, oh my what a lovely looking pie, and Honey, don't look at the veal, don't look at the veal!
I approach the Farmer's Market like a terrorist. I know what I want, and I want to get out of there before some scent-free Birkenstock freak picks up on my aroma of soap and deodorant and shampoo and Oscar de la Renta. I don't want a politically correctiveness scene, I just want something to soak up the Niagara region bulk buy of Sauvignon Blanc currently sloshing around in my stomach.
But first I need a coffee, which in itself is a mission since no one else seems to be in caffeine withdrawal. The sea of corduroy blazers and hairy legs stand like cult zombies, all pale and patient, waiting for their organic, soya, justice-for-all, no foam, no Columbian drug lord owned and operated bean farm, lattes. I just want a large – not grande – LARGE, coffee so I can scarf back my scone and get the hell out of there.
Also standing in the way of doughy bliss are the morons who think it's a great idea to wake up their filthy, matted hair, cloth-diaper clad offspring so they can gnaw on an organic carrot while Mommy and her "partner" tenderly browse through the pesticide-free basil, instead of leaving them at home in front of the telly watching violent cartoons, happily plowing through a bowl of Fruit Loops with breast milk.
Get out of my way, I smell yeast of the non-gynecological kind.
When I finally push past the couple trying to decide between the virgin arugula or the wheat-free cabbage, I get to the bakery only to see I have taken one too many loops in the park. There's a fucking line up. Hundreds, no thousands of poorly groomed philosophy major, NDP types with backbacks and yoga mats and environmentally-friendly travel mugs marveling at what a beautiful morning it is, pointing at my warm, blueberry scone. I hate line ups more than I hate men in leather sandals with yellow toenails so I make a low, growling noise like a wild beast and stomp out, heading straight to the Tim's drive thru for a stale tea biscuit that I flip to the dogs and go home and make a stiff Bloody Mary and go back to bed.
Thank god someone told me there's an alternative Farmer's Market every Friday on the grassy area where people in wheelchairs with IV poles chain smoke in front of the VG Hospital's Centennial Building. For those of you who are as confused as I am as to which poorly-funded hospital that is, it's the one with the big parking lot off of Tower Road where pro-lifers protest before they go to the Farmer's Market.
With any luck this Market will be inhabited by people who have actually had a pedicure in their lifetime, and also have places to be – like, jobs – and don't have the time to stand around and fondle tomatoes. The shoppers at this outdoor market will have showered for work, may have to ask for a plastic bag, and don't mind exposing their skin to direct sunlight. Plus with any luck their little Riatlin addicts will be tucked away in daycare, where they belong.
The list of vendors include butchers and real farmers and local coffee bean floggers and Julien's Bakery, Blossom Shops, Evans Fresh Seafoods and a whole bunch of other edible and non-edible delights that you can grab and go home. Oh, and it's from 10 until 2, so you'll have plenty of time to groom yourself before you go.
And if you spot someone wearing sandals and socks you can direct their lethargic meat and gluten-free asses up to the podiatry wing of the VG to have their corns lopped off once and for all.
The Partners for Care (hey, I didn't think that up) Farmer's Market runs Fridays from June until October 9th. 10 until 2. They accept food bank donations if you are so inclined, but if you had food to donate why the hell go to a market?