First day in Madison, WI. I fell asleep next to my 2.5 year old on the air mattress that was laid out for him and his brother. I was woken up to the easily recognizable squeals of them playing in the living room, enjoying the fact that they had even more attention being bestowed upon them by the great aunts and uncles and cousins who live here.
The sun was shining bright, and there was a cool breeze of fresh, clean air kissing my face Good Morning as I walked out. We headed out fairly early, aimed with a full list of things to do and people to visit. But before anything else, we wanted to start our day with at one of the best, the largest farmer’s market I had ever been to, even within New York City.
The Dane County Farmer’s Market is set up every season, which usually runs from April through November, on Saturdays and Wednesdays on a different location for each day. But the most popular day, and the best location, is on Saturdays on the Capitol Square.
When we arrived to the Capitol Square, the area was already crowded, and the selling farmers were busy and active. The air smelled like fresh cut flowers and we were excited to see what we could find.
As we slowly followed the crowds around the Capitol, I started reminiscing about our time living here, and the times we used to come and browse and shop and stroll, making these our Saturday mornings. Back then however, I was either pregnant, or just had a baby, or was pregnant again, or just had a baby again, so we didn’t visit as much as I would’ve like. Not as much as we would visit if we still lived here. Amazing how we appreciated it even more now, than then.
Maybe it was the beautiful heirloom tomatoes, maybe it was the amazing flowers brought to us by the Laotian farmers, maybe it was the wonderful smell of baked goods, or the good old Wisconsin maple syrup…not sure exactly what it was, but I felt as torn between my New York City self and this other life I used to have living in Madison, WI.
The boys loved stopping by at the stands and checking out the different snacks and treats along the way. But even when they weren’t buying snacks, there was plenty to see and touch, and plenty of reasons to stop and say hi to the vendors and check everything out. It seemed like one of the simplest thing any family could do, visit their local farmer’s market, and yet here we were, watching bees, eating popcorn, and smiling to other families who passed us by. We even took a moment to sit on the lawn for a light and early lunch made up of our purchases, while the boys ran around and we admired the majestic Capitol building, it’s architecture and grandeur. As we rested, the crowds kept passing by, enjoying the day, enjoying the market, and helping Madison feel like home again.
Fast forward to the end of the day and this feeling of being home remained in our hearts as we sat and watched the sunset, surrounded by nothing more than the sound of the same breeze that kissed me Good Morning, except this time it was cradling me into night.