“the best way to spend a Saturday” …… my local markets make a bold statement about what they have to offer come the weekend, so one sunny Saturday in early March I decided to take it upon myself to gauge whether this claim held any weight.
The Engineering Man of Mystery (my husband), Little Monkey and I arrived mid-morning and managed to score a car-park in the busy (but kept in reign by a couple of parking attendants) parking area.
The market is situated within the grounds of Clontarf Aboriginal College off Manning Road, positioned on a delightful shaded grassy plain. The setting which greeted us upon alighting our vehicle was a happy and inviting one with people from all walks and stages of life ambling about enjoying the sunshine, food, quality produce and buskers. Over in the corner the yelps of happy children jumping on an inflatable castle indicate much fun being had, dog owners with their hounds stroll merrily by, and families are lying on the grass enjoying some recently purchased freshly baked goods in the shade of the giant pine trees which offer a substantial amount of shade for refuge if the sun gets too much.
The market is bigger than I had anticipated and a great assortment of goods are on offer from various plants, fresh eggs, free-range meats, freshly baked breads and pastries, cheeses, well-priced fresh fruit and vegetables, a stall selling some intriguingly beautiful macaroons, fresh seafood, coffee – the list goes on. I was impressed by the variety and quality before me. And just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, I noticed even Elmars had set up a van selling fresh hot wursts in buns – now you’re talking!
Whilst I wasn’t much in the mood for ‘shopping’ (I was too interested in soaking up the pleasant atmosphere) but I did purchase some cheeses from the ‘The Old Cheddar Cheese Company’ van which were surprisingly good.
As I strolled around munching on my newly-acquired cheese, I notice all around me people wear happy faces, chat to stall-holders, sample produce, strike up a conversation with the people standing next to them, and generally just enjoy themselves. And, consequently, as a smile spreads across my face I think, well, maybe this really is the best way to spend a Saturday after all?