Thursday, August 13, 2009
Awesome. More like this, please -- everywhere!
Rockin' Jay Inslee (D-WA), has proposed a bill to have USDA pick up 80% of the costs of setting up community gardens! You know, like in Minto-Brown Island Park! What a great idea! Jay was briefly a Congressman from the dry side of Washington State, but got wiped out in the 1994 "Contract with America" revolution where Washingtonians also got rid of a sitting speaker of the house, Tom Foley in order to enjoy life under Newt. But Jay just went to the wet side and was back in Congress before long. He's got a foolish fascination with biofuels but his heart's definitely in the right place.
Salem is blessed with the April-October outdoor Salem Saturday Market (now supported by an enthusiastic and energetic Friends group, complete with a blog) and the midweek Wednesday Market and the year-round indoor Salem Public Market as well.
One possible silver lining to the continuing collapse of the commercial real estate market is that it might create an opportunity for more year-round options for fresh, local produce sales as well.
(Wednesday Market photo "Fresh Tastes Better" from the wonderful Salem, Oregon Daily Photo Diary.)
How many times have you walked around a neighborhood that you are driving through on a daily basis and seen homes, flowers, nooks of interest that are totally unnoticed at the pace of an automobile and with your eyes on the road? So it is with the advances of technology that are coming at a faster pace every day. . . .
Perhaps the attraction of a Farmers’ Market may be more than the freshest vegetables and fruit. When I look at the faces of the people thronging these small places, hear the lilt in their voices, feel the warmth and joy that overhangs the area, I think there is much more to going to the market than just provisions for the larder. It may be that we are “provisioning” our soul’s hunger for connections and the feeling of community . . . . I would stipulate that every neighborhood would have stores and facilities within walking distance so the need of a loaf of bread at the last minute would not require a trip in the car.
This is sounding more and more like the small towns that so many of us grew up in. Not such a bad idea.
I’m not “Queen,” but I can dream of the best of both worlds. In the meantime, see you on Saturdays at the [Salem Saturday] Market!