At Palafox Market this morning, I enjoyed getting to know a few of the many artists and cottage industry vendors, as well as long established businesses in Pensacola. The market stretches several blocks.
Mark Hainds is a favorite vendor for me. He is a writer, biologist, and organic gardener. This morning I was early enough to purchase one of a few dozen eggs from his farm. Aren’t they beautiful? I bought Mark’s strawberry – fig preserves to replace the blueberry jam I enjoyed all last week. He grows or picks all his fruit and makes jams, jelly, and preserves.
I met Eric Yoder who owns an organic coffee farm in Costa Rica, and roasts and sells the beans under the name Keens Beans here in Pensacola, named after his wife. He ground it for me, and I took a fresh cup of dark blend to sip as I meandered around the booths.
After I completed my rounds, I returned to put everything away at home, and in time to jog down to End of the Line Cafe. That was the meet-up point for a 2-hour class on Backyard Fruit All Year Long. Christian Wagley led us on a neighborhood walk looking at various fruit tree varieties and then ended up at his home and garden where we learned how to select locally viable varieties of fruit bearing trees from tangerines, limes, lemon, orange, satsuma, to persimmon, fig, blueberry, peach, and plum. I am sure I a leaving a few out.
Here Christian is standing by Japanese Plum trees he planted several years ago.
By noon I was tired but excited about being in the “hub” of all this wonderful activity and wonderful people. Later I led a book group for 350-Pensacola back down at the cafe. Five women formed a group to read Sherman Alexie’s book, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian. This is part of a Land Ethic discussion I am leading with various groups in our area using Aldo Leopold‘s famous essay exploring ethics as a basis for determining how we make decisions about land use. We are reading novels because stories are the closest we can come to living the real experience. If you want to join us or want to learn more about it, please contact me.
Tonight is warmer so I do not think I’ll need the hot water bottle. I received many other great suggestions from friends including a specific type of radiant heater. Other suggested types of clothing I can wear. Thanks to all of you who wrote me.
Tomorrow should be sunny again, then we go into warmer days but overcast and rainy.
Now I am turning my attention to my journey back to Arizona, to Tucson, to dear friends, my beloved desert, and the Tucson Book Festival.