It's Good To Be Back
Saturday was our first Ligonier Country Market of the season. We spent Thursday, Friday, and Saturday in “crazy market mode.” Preparing for market is always a mix of anticipation, excitement and stress…probably with an emphasis on stress. Every year, the week of market, I think I’m not doing too badly. I have a solid inventory, I have my key components, I check, recheck, and check again my check list of supplies. Inevitably, Thursday and Friday, I feel as though I need another week. This year, it was the same pattern. At noon on Friday, I asked my bibbed wonder if I should put the canopy for the tent in the wash…his exasperated response was, “Yes, if it were the first Sunday following the last market!” and he gave me the duh, face. You know the duh, face I’m talking about. On that particular day, at that particular moment, with that particular duh face, I wanted to smack the duh, right off that handsome bald head. It is a very good thing The Bibbed Wonder and I don’t stress about the same things. You see, he is stressed over the fact that the SKU#’s are not in order, the fact that I have failed to document every ounce of inventory we have packed, and that the cash in the cash box is not all going in the same direction. I on the other hand, have packed the inventory in the ROY G. BIV order I find aesthetically pleasing, am stressed because not all my soap tags are the same size, and we are not permitted to have table covers so the legs of the table are showing…Egad, I cannot live like this! We finally finished our market insanity at 10 o’clock on Friday night.
Welcome 2:30 Saturday morning! We were up, taking care of barn chores, taking care of minute details and making ourselves presentable for the public. I believe it is unacceptable to appear in public in my faded black yoga pants, messy soap hair, and minimal make up. I forgot how much work it takes to look presentable. When we arrived at market at 5:30, it was daylight and the usual die-hard crowd was there. It took us forever to get set up but I must admit, we spent a lot of time visiting and catching up. I felt like I had awakened from hibernation. I did not realize how much I missed human interaction. That would be the theme of the day. I tend to be on the chatty side anyhow, but remove me from quarantine put me with people I missed and enjoy and I felt like a kid in a candy store. I simply could not get enough conversation in.
It was so nice to feel the buzz of market, see people out and about, catch up on all that is happening in their lives, and feel a bit of normalcy again. Market was different this week, I was not blind to the change but it was still wonderful to be there. By the time noon came around, I was feeling what we call “the after market drag.” The buzz has quieted, the adrenaline has slowed, and we are ready for some quiet time and a nap. Our bean fell asleep as soon as her little bottom hit the seat. Eric and I chat the whole way home, just to ensure we make it there safely and we discussed our day and our conversations.
What we gleaned from all our interactions was that everyone has a different take on this virus thing. Everyone is handling it to the best of her or his ability and probably most importantly, everyone is fighting their own battle. I have discussed in depth our perception of the pandemic. We choose to err on the side of caution for our bean’s health and well-being. However, my very dear friend has a special needs adult daughter and they are fighting a different battle. Staying in, staying safe and wearing a mask does not work for them. Wearing a mask creates so much anxiety for our friend’s daughter that her anxiety medication had to be increased. The disruption of her schedule has caused her to regress in behaviors, and my dear friend is at her wits end.
Another well loved customer, is fighting for the safety, well being and proper care for her elderly clients. Yet another well-loved customer is immune compromised and is having anxiety about going out in public and getting back to day to day life. A dear friend has a son working the front lines and a daughter studying in a foreign country. Her stress and anxiety for her children is beyond my comprehension. There are others who have had it with the safety protocol, the social distancing, and the uncertainty and are forcing themselves to return to life pre-pandemic. I don’t know what the correct answer is. I don’t know if there is a correct answer. I do know, it was good to see friendly familiar faces, hear personal stories, and make that connection. I missed you all and I am so happy to be back. I am certain, we will make it through this, and I am even more certain we will make it through this together. So, whatever your struggle, whatever your answer, stay safe, stay smart, and keep on washing your hands. Soap will continue to fight the good fight for you.