Sunday’s farmers market during the summer is always packed. It’s that way in the summer. No one can resist the fresh corn or the plump, red tomatoes. And the peach guy has about twenty samples on which some people gorge for about twenty minutes. They look like overgrown chipmunks, cheeks full of peach slices and the juice dripping off their chins. The long days attract mothers and their strollers and fathers and their sons. Mixed among the seasonal hoards are the regulars who I see week in and week out, even in the lean months of January when broccoli seems to be the only star of the market.
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Hot-house tomatoes come to market early in spring. This is too early for a tomato. Tomatoes herald the beginning of summer—real summer, not some fabrication designed to hurry along a year before its time. Hot-house tomatoes remind me of Christmas decorations that show up before Thanksgiving. Sadly, too many patrons of the farmer's market succumb to the temptation. "Look!" they say. "Tomatoes!!!!!" And they go buy the mealy, half-green half-real approximations of the real thing.