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Our Farmer’s Markets are the greatest

This weeks Hammertime looks at farmers markets and the fun one can have at them.

Now that my wife and I are both retired, we can get out and explore our great province quite a bit and have really gotten into the casual summer habit of dropping into the farmer’s markets in and around central Alberta.

If one goes early in the morning, you are tempted and teased with the magnificent and tantalizing aroma of breakfast cooking on the grill, and if you wish, you can chow down on a wide variety of unique and delicious wake-me-up combos, with coffee and juice included. One of the best benefits of farmer’s markets is the friendly atmosphere and greetings at every table or booth, with no pressure to buy, just a warm welcome to browse at your leisure. Most markets even have music playing or local performers sharing their talents.

This warm and magic time of the seasons is so great to get all sorts of fresh fruits, veggies and other edible surprises from near and far, and our farmer’s markets have it all in abundance every week.  It is a real treat to hear the congenial booth owners proudly praise and promote their quality products, and if one is so inclined, you may even be able to do a little friendly dickering on the price, which is always strictly cash with no cards or hassle. Also along the rows and rows of market booths and tables are a wide variety of home-grown or prepared items from pies to pickles and perogies to peanut brittle, as well as countless exquisite and unique handmade articles by skilled craftsmen and counters and boxes full of neat and amazing treasures of yesterday and today.

Farmer’s markets are also a great place to meet old friends and neighbours, and to stop and relax and have a coffee or a chat without having the fear of getting run over by a shopping cart or waiting in long lines at the check-out counters. At most farmer’s markets, local clubs and organizations can be found hosting a booth where you can get information or register for all sorts of community and recreational events, or kindly buy a ticket for a special cause.

I don’t really mind coming home after our farmer’s market adventures and packing in all those goodies, as well as shelling peas (without sampling to many), husking corn and washing the berries. After all, once our ladies finish their kitchen magic, we will be allowed to enjoy the creations of nature’s finest in a few days, as well as throughout our long and cold winter. For those who haven’t visited the farmer’s market in your community, you are really missing out on the very best indoor/outdoor rain or shine casual down-home family shopping experience ion town, which is and always will be as traditional, and friendly as garage sales, county fairs, picnics, and family reunions.

Beware of the car key dilemma

“They weren’t in my pockets, and suddenly I realized that I must have left them in the car. Frantically, I headed for the parking lot, vividly recalling that my husband had scolded me so many times for leaving my car keys in the ignition. He was afraid that the car would get stolen, and as I looked around the parking lot in a panic I realized that he was right, because the parking lot was empty.

I immediately called the police, gave them my location, and then confessed that I had left my keys in the car, and that it had been stolen.

I then made that most difficult call to my husband, relating in tears that I had left my keys in the car and that it was stolen. There was a long moment of silence and I  thought that we had been disconnected, but then I heard his voice....’Are you kidding me’, he barked, ‘I dropped you off.’

Now it was my turn to be silent and embarrassed, and finally I quietly uttered.....’Well, please come and get me.’ My husband retorted, ‘I will, as soon as I can convince this cop that I didn’t steal your car.’”

This could happen to any of us, so don’t laugh or scold, and welcome to the golden years.

Timely tips for having a great day.

*Life is too short to be serious all the time, so if you can’t laugh at yourself, just give me a call and I will laugh at and along with you.

*The secret to happiness is a good sense of humour and a bad memory.

*Ice cream is clearly God’s way of saying he likes us just a little bit chubby.

*We shouldn’t always expect our children or grandchildren to follow in our footsteps. We want them to take the path next to us and then go further than we have ever dreamt possible.

Now that we finally have a little rain, we hope that between the sunshine and the showers, the fruits of our harvest will become bountiful. In the meantime just go ahead and have a great week, all of you..