Friday, September 19, 2008

MARKET TRIP (September 14th)

Excited butterflies flitted in her stomach as she turned the corner and scanned the tops of the first few market carts, which seemed to go onto into infinity. “A real outdoor market,” she thought. “How absolutely lovely!” It was as if she’d truly stepped into one of her very own fairytales—right into the real setting of Beauty and the Beast. It took all her might to continue walking along. Her mind was awestruck and her body seemed more content frozen in place while her eyes attempted to take everything in. All of the players… no, not actors… the real live people… seemed highly caught up in the scenario. They were either happily chatting, stocking their home-brought carts with food, clothing, and other intriguing items, or bargaining with the venders (who actually truly raised their voices in an attempt to get the attention of the numerous passersby!). Not one person seemed the least bit upset, dull, or in low spirits. How could they?

As she finally stepped into the fairytale like scenery, she couldn’t help but to immediately become ever more enamored with it. As far as she could see, everyone treated everyone else (stranger or not) with the utmost respect and dignity. In fact, even those who carefully pushed passed her seemed to smile lightly or send out a hardy “Bonjour mademoiselle” in her direction. Oh how she wished she could have the words to greet them back! Everyone seemed to be conversing so easily, but this was not her language, and she could barely pick out the commonplace words from their mile-a-minute conversations. Maybe one day she’d be able to speak just as fluidly without a second thought or hesitation. A dreamy smile spread across her lips.

As she slowly made her own way through the crowd of beauty, smells of freshly baked bread, seafood, recently butchered meat, spices, and flowers seemed to overpower all her senses. She was absolutely positive that even if she allowed her eyes to glaze over and solely focused on the smells, she would easily be able to find whatever product she sought out. Of course though, she reminded herself, she was not here today to seek out any product in particular. She just came to witness the scene, and take it on as the role of an extra.

Maybe next week she would come back and actually purchase food or clothing or a plant! She wanted everything, but she knew she needed to resist. It was in fact only her first time at the market and there was the highly probable possibility that every week’s market would introduce her to new products for purchase. She’d hate to find something more desirable at a later date and not be able to purchase it because she had no spending money left. She needed to be frugal and smart about this, and if she wasn’t, she would have no one else to blame but herself.

As she continued down the line of carts, she realized she was drowned in them for a far back and forward as she could see. “I must be nearly dead center now,” she thought. Unaffected by this truth, she found herself meandering onward anyway and stopping every now and then to take interest in fresh, appealing fruit or beautifully constructed jewelry. It wouldn’t be hard to find her way back. It was a pretty straight shot after all, and she was sure someone sweet would be able to help her if she ended up lost.

When she got to the end of the line, after what seemed like an eternity of peace, serenity, and good fortune, she turned one last time to look back at the striking display. Her arms reached around her center, and she stood there holding herself up. This was her reality now. For the next hour, day, month. She couldn’t have asked for anything better… and yet, a slight feeling of longing pulled in the pit of stomach. Hmm, she realized, she could ask for something more. “I’ll just have to tell them all about it in my next letter,” she whispered to herself and allowed a simple smile to spread across her lips. “Next time, they can experience it with me.”

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