And January rolls along … Market was pretty good yesterday in the city: it was pouring rain for most of the setup (8 a.m.) to open (10 a.m.) and we worked hard to accept the inevitable rainy market day. It was tough going to begin with: the water was pooling in the corners of the tent and the wind was randomly tossing it all out. This happens. It's one of the perils of winter markets.
Would I like an indoor winter market? Well sure, but I can't see how we'd be able to make any money if we also had to pay a share of utilities and upkeep. Perhaps just a simple covered area would be nice. It would be really dark though, on these deep winter days.
On second thought, let's just keep it simple. Yesterday the rain eventually petered out and gave way to what was a pretty nice day, and no customers were soaked by tent water bombs (this week). When the market closed, we put everything away, took out our own garbage and left without a trace.
We have not had really good weather at these winter markets this season. Often we have come back to the farm with rain-soaked market gear that naturally enough gets frozen solid over the course of the week. I try to be disciplined about taking everything out and drying it in the shop but rarely do. Consequently, setting up for markets often involves chipping away at iced up market gear.
This week, perhaps as penance for all the times I have just chucked it all in the back of the truck, I made an extra effort to fold and place everything nicely so at least it wouldn't be frozen into a solid block of tent weights, rain covers, spare boxes, signage and roll bags. Ice fest avoided next week I hope.
Since it's January, and I have very little work to write about, I thought I might get into a little political/current event commentary. There are a couple of issues swirling about in the back of my mind and I feel free to contemplate them in this arena.
Honestly though, what seems to be concerning me more than the actual topics is the feeling of futility that accompanies contemplation. That's another reason why I stacked and folded everything really well: I have the power to influence outcomes and should exercise it appropriately.
But I want to do more and here I have this little column that is mine, all mine.
So let me just say straight out that I think the Pemberton Festival was an environmental embarrassment and a terrible thing to do to a piece of farmland. Where did all the sewage go after it overwhelmed the usual places very near the beginning? What happened to all that camping gear trashed and abandoned by attendees? It took days to fill the dump trucks brought in for the job. Let it be known that I will be advocating for a classical music festival.
I have also decided to steer clear of "science-based" approaches to issue analysis. I often hear the phrase used by people who go on to cite science bought and paid for by the organizations that stand to gain from the conclusions. I will now be rolling my eyes when I hear that phrase.
The first devastating blows have been dealt in the Farm Column January rebellion.
Anna Helmer is being upstaged by a ceiling fan.