I have beef with beef

I spent this morning involved in an activity I never would have seen myself doing. One of the vendors got sick today—I don’t even know what was wrong with him but he felt terrible, apparently—and asked for one of the interns to help him. Although my work selling drinks under the welcome booth is obviously crucial, the market staff was generous enough to spare me for a couple hours. So I found myself standing between the knife-sharpener guy and the praline guy, selling ribeyes and link sausage instead of coffee and tea. The sick vendor just happened to raise cows, pigs, and chickens for meat— something I haven’t eaten in ten months and don’t plan to anytime soon. I used to eat meat quite happily but today I found myself digging through coolers of frozen dead animals with mild disgust.

Dead animals

The farmer mostly sat in his truck but sometimes he sat behind his table with me. I kind of preferred him in the truck because a) I thought he could be contagious and b) he’s a gruff guy anyway, but because he was sick he was extra grumpy today and grouched at anyone who addressed him. I may choose to avoid eating meat myself, but I did not appreciate that he was scaring away my customers. It’s important for me to do well at whatever task is assigned me. I can’t help myself— that perfectionist/overachieving tendency sometimes takes over. So I sold dead animals like I was getting paid to do it.

I did laugh at the irony of the situation, though. Every now and then I’d look over at this big heavy-set farmer, with his faded plaid cotton button-down, denim overalls, and heavy farm boots, his thick shock of hair and full beard. And I’d wonder what he’d think or say if he knew that the girl selling his meat was a vegetarian.

After the market, I went running then drove to a free yoga session in Audubon Park. It was incredibly pleasant, contorting my body in fancy ways under the shade of a giant oak tree. They tried to make us do this exact move:

Needless to say I fell over. But I did do a headstand! I felt super legit.
During the relaxation exercises at the end of the session (where you lay on your back and close your eyes) I fell asleep. It was a very refreshing three-minute nap.
Then I went running in the park because I had never been there before. It’s a beautiful place! I’d feel silly driving somewhere specifically to run there but I think it might be worth it in order to run in that park.

Another thing that made today wonderful! My farm boy (the one who gave me corn last week) invited me to his farm! I might go pick vegetables there Monday morning (for the Tuesday market), if Kelly and Tati will come with me. I think it would be really cool to get a glimpse of that part of the farmers market system, before the produce actually makes it to the market. Even though I grew up in a rural area, there’s still a lot I don’t know about agricultural life, plus it varies place to place. I hope this works out!