Monday, May 2, 2011

Southeast San Diego Farmers Market

We took the kiddos to the local farmers market this past friday.  I hate to admit that it was the FIRST time I'd been there!  Jeremy took the kids once before, and he said that unfortunately this go-around was even smaller than the last time.  We did go toward the end of the time-frame (2-7 officially,we showed up at 6:30) but there were only a handful of vendors and the few that were there were starting to pack up.  We met a lovely woman from Somalia who had some awesome fusion-African food that incorporated tastes from a few different regions.  She and her daughter recently started this food business and they were incredibly kind-hearted folks with some delicious sambussas and alicha.

Jeremy had apparently done some research and told me that this is not the first market they have attempted in the Southeast region of San Diego.  Unfortunately none of the past markets has succeeded.  It's not hard to see this one teetering on the verge of oblivion, but I hope that we can rally our neighbors enough to show some support and stoke the embers.  A thriving outdoor market in this part of the city could be such a blessing to a blighted community.  It would be a fantastic way for neighbors to meet each other and build community, as well as supporting local businesses and farmers.  It could change the health of the community and people, from the inside out.  It's no secret that lower income parts of town also tend to struggle the most with health issues and healthy eating habits, so it would be the perfect way to reach out to this demographic and educate people.

Some other really exciting potential is that many people in this area have a good amount of land.  We were fortunate enough to meet the market manager, Diane, and she was mentioning that they are trying to educate the people in the community in growing their own food and bringing it into the market to sell.  With something like this, it could bring money directly back into our immediate community and help people from so many different directions.  It feels like a regression back to the old world, where people would (and still do, in some parts of the world) walk their goods to the market to barter and sell within their immediate community.  It's something we've been lacking in our society since our grandparents era, maybe we've never even had it.  Something of romanticism that reminds us of foreign countries or a scene out of a movie.

This Friday we will again be picking up some delicious African food from this market.  It would be awesome to see some of you there, picking up some produce or sharing dinner with us.  I promise that it won't have all of the fancy booths that the Hillcrest market has, but you will know that you are doing something good to contribute to a community that could really use your support.  Who knows, you may even catch a glimpse of that spark and know that over time the flames will grow because of you.

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