i love love markets!
time check: 06:14 am
Yesterday, we prepared our own breakfast! We took a break from scouting breakfast spots and decided to create our own "breakfast spot" in our Quezon City apartment. Oh, I cannot believe we haven't tried this sooner. You see, I am lousy with things which involve the hands (except for typing, haha!) - cutting, drawing, sewing, cooking, etc.; I think I am crafty in thoughts but not in deeds. :p Preparation of food and then the actual cooking intimidate me thus I'd much rather be the recipient of this beautiful process than be involved in it. But yesterday, I decided to finally get over this lousiness and weakness and face my fears. It's now or never. Do or die. Make or break. Haha! The next step after finally deciding which recipe to execute is of course, to shop for ingredients. I am tired of air conditioned groceries and pre-packed goodies thus we went to the real thing - the market! And because I live near Cubao, the obvious choice is the grandfather of all markets in Quezon City, the Farmer's Market.
My fascination with markets started with Neil Oshima's photos of all the markets in the world featured in a magazine (I can't remember if it's Rogue or Esquire). In the write up showcasing Oshima's photography, markets were described to be the microcosm of a particular country. You want to soak in all the culture of a place? Get a quick fix from its market. I have been to the souks in Dubai and I affirm this claim on markets. They are fascinating. The most alive "place" in the world. A mix of noise, smell, aroma, taste, feelings, commerce, routine and... - you can think of just about any word and for sure, it will find its perfect place in the basket of words to describe markets. Another wonderful thing about markets? They are at their best in the MORNING (except for night markets of course, haha, ang pilosospo). Products are freshest. Sellers gentler and kinder. Consumers have more bargaining power employing the buena mano magic. We woke up before 6:00 am, splashed cold water on our faces and went straight to Farmer's Market. People around me may think I am crazy jumping and clapping my hands. I was that excited. Seriously.
When the alarm sounded that Saturday morning, 5:30 am to be exact, my willpower was weakened due to the "luxury" of a soft mattress, a chilly morning comforted by a blanket, a body too tired from the five-day work week thus deserving of a longer snooze time. It is not fair to wake up this early on a Saturday, I thought. Being in the market erased all that thought, not only because of the excitement I felt with spending my morning in a place so alive even when the sun has barely risen but more so, the industry and perseverance of the people whose main source of income is anchored in the presence of a community market are infectious. This is not something a grocery and air-conditioned retailers can ever EVER replace. I think I learned a lot from my short trip to Farmer's. That Filipinos are industrious. That markets are indeed colorful. And aromatic. That we should be more vigilant with the people running this country (MOST people need to work hard for their everyday living - I think those in the senate and in the congress need this kind of field trip). You know the petition to make the public officials take public transport? Let's do another petition to make them work in wet markets, GARDEMET*! That asparagus is a pretty vegetable. :D
Hey you, good morning!
*Gar-de-met (expression): ilocano version of "God, damn it" as popularized by my dearest father. haha!