For years my mum has called me a toad (except last week when she ‘accidently’ called me a fat toad. I’ll gloss over that for now though…). The reason for this comparison? She thinks I was born cold blooded. I am rarely warm – even in the summer it needs to be close to tropical for me to feel a little toasty. And that’s why Sunday was such a challenge for me.
I had my first stall at my first ever Farmer’s Market. That was a little hair raising in itself, but as I left home at 6.30am (another Sunday challenge), it was -6.5. When I arrived at the market it was -3. Then it started raining…ice. Mum, dad and I put up my newly acquired gazebo, set out the stall and they, very sensibly, left. I settled in my gazebo sporting the following:
Underwear, two thermal vests, one long sleeved top, one polo neck jumper, one very thick cardigan, a pair of tights, a pair of normal socks, a pair of thermal socks, boots, a pair of leggings, a pair of tracksuit bottoms a pair of oversized ski trousers, a coat, a snood, a hat, a pair of gloves and….a slanket (one of those blankets with arms). Within two minutes of sitting still I was completely frozen. And being laughed at by passers by.
In an attempt to stave off hypothermia I attempted to continue moving by taking notes throughout the 6 hours I was there. These were as follows:
Embarrassing moment 1: Attempting to run through the market to grab a cup of coffee before parents left…and loosing ski trousers as I went (tip: this does seem to be a good way to break the ice with other stall holders)
Embarrassing moment 2: Discovering that the reason things felt a ‘bit funny’ when I moved to get a carrier bag for a customer was because the sheer quantity of clothes I was clad in meant that I’d not managed to release the stool from between my legs. I was therefore waddling around looking like I’d sprouted a camping stool shaped tail.
Awkward moment: Realising I’d accidently broken into Sainsbury’s having forced the door open so I could use their toilets (it hadn’t opened yet)
Lovely moment 1: My aunt arriving with freshly baked delicious cookies and a bottle of homemade raspberry vinegar (to be consumed separately)
Lovely moment 2: Sister 1 and Sister 2 arriving together and buying me hot porridge to try to stave off the hypothermia
Lovely moment 3: My godson and his big brother appearing out of nowhere having driven an hour or so to see me (well, their mum and dad drove…they’re clever boys but they are both of an age where they still eat with their fingers…)
Happy moment 1: Taking my first pennies from the first friendly face to visit (thank you cycling friends mum) having been told not to expect to take any money for the first couple of markets
Happy moment 2: Taking enough money to cover my pitch bearing in mind it was my first market and it was the sort of weather that only polar bears really enjoy
Happy moment 3: Taking a little over my pitch money!
Overall, it was a FREEZING but fantabulous day. I met so many lovely people – customers and stall holders. I feel I am now an authority on dog coats – having seen, I think, every shape and style ever made. I am slightly concerned by the re emergence of rainbow knitwear that seemed to surface in the shape of jumpers, coats, hats and (worryingly) leggings. I’ll blame the extreme temperatures for that though.
When I got back to mum and dad’s house, dad helpfully found out the weather forecast for this week. As I told him, the next date that I care about the weather for is 11th March as that’s when I do it all again. Only hopefully in slightly fewer layers…and maybe I’ll have warmed up by then :o)
PS: The poggyW website (for those not keen on hypothermia) is www.poggyw.co.uk :o)