Sunday Street Market By The Riverside
As colorful as the town’s yearly cultural festivities, the Sunday market by the riverside exudes a vibrant array of produce, people and activities. As early as Sunrise, people from the different towns in Capiz prepare for what’s to become an exciting event in the city.
Every Sunday, my mom would go to the market with my dad. This is part of their routine every weekend. A routine I took for granted when I was younger.
A Second Chance
Just barely finishing my morning coffee, I heard my mom say, “I’m going to the market. Who wants to go with me?” When I was younger, I wasn’t really into going to the market. If I do need to drive my mom, I would normally just wait inside the car, listening to the radio or reading a book. One or all of my five sisters would tag along with her. Strangely, I heard an inner voice that said, “Go. It’s going to be fun. You are given a second chance to experience a rare opportunity.” I grabbed my slippers and iPhone camera. My parents looked a bit surprised when I went inside the car. My mom looked at me and said, “Are you sure you want to come? It rained earlier and the street is wet and muddy.” I replied excitedly, “Yep, I’m sure.” My mom and dad looked at each other with a confused look. I could almost read their minds that seemed to be saying in unison, “Is he for real?” I told them both, “I miss events like this. I wish to make as much memories as I can.” Somehow I knew they understood what I meant. They both smiled in affirmation. My dad then started the car and off we went to the market.
The Joys Of Tagging Along
Today, it was my turn to tag along with my mom and I’m loving it. So many varieties of fruits and vegetables. Some of which I have not seen for years. More exciting were the people, their stories, the way they sell their products, the rich, interesting human interactions and facial expressions. All these captivated my vision, thoughts and imagination. It’s like watching a movie only it is too real. Every scene is unique, colorful and touching than the other one before it.
The Street Market Vendors And Their Faces
Every Sunday, I would see this woman on the same spot. Braving heat and rain, she patiently waits for the next customer. She sells vegetables and native herbs. More than the produce she sells, I am drawn to her face, particularly the eyes. I can almost see a life filled with challenges, hardships, hope, of love and happiness in the most simplest of things. I wonder if how many people took the time to even look at her face and see the person behind it? How many would bother to ask her story? The more time I spent at the market, the more faces I see. Some are moving while some makes you smile, even laugh.
My mom bought some “Pinipig” from this woman. It almost taste and feels like a flattened rice with a sweet scent. It goes well with milk and sugar with lots of ice. The last time I get to taste one was 10 years ago. Sad? I think so. How can I miss all these?
Street Market And What It Means
The street market is more than just a way for people to sell their goods and earn a living. It is a way of life, a lifestyle if you will. It is part of the people’s tradition and heritage. It is part of the town’s timeless tradition that only becomes more enriching and interesting as time passes by.
While my mom was busy choosing which vegetables to buy, my dad was busy talking to these ladies. He has a gift in making great conversations. He said something funny that made these women laugh generously.
The Legend Of The “Puso”
“Puso,” as locals called it is the heart of a banana plant. It will open and grow to become the banana fruit. Many legends were inspired by it. One such legend is about a young boy who met a dwarf. The dwarf told him that at midnight, during a full moon, the “Puso” opens up and would drop a single pearl-like nectar. He must catch it with his mouth open. If he does, he will gain superpowers and wealth. So, the boy did as instructed but every time, he falls asleep and miss his chance. He would try everything to stay awake but all went in vain. Back then, coffee or Redbull wasn’t invented yet. Every morning, he would harvest the banana fruits before returning home. His mom would then sell them at the market.
Many years after,when the boy turned into a man, he got tired of waiting and decided to stop. He then told his mom about the whole story as well as the realization that it was never true. That the dwarf lied and tricked him. His mom told him, “The dwarf wasn’t exactly lying.” The man felt confused. His mom held his hand and guided him to a room filled with treasure chests. His mom then told him, “Open it.” The man can’t believe what he saw when he opened the chests. The chests were full of money. He asked her mom, “Where did you get these?” Her mom smiled and told him, “They are the money you earned from all the bananas you brought home for so many years.” She then said to him with pride and joy, “You did find your wealth and the power that comes from hard work.” Beaming with happiness, the man said, “Oh, now I get it!”
A bucket of orchids. These are grown in the backyard of most of the town’s people. I remember that back in the past, when commercial fertilizers were unheard of, crushed egg shells and fresh urine were used to nourish the orchids and for them to bear lots of flowers. It may sound “Yucky,” even unhygienic but it did work. I just don’t know the rationale behind it. Urea or similar elements perhaps?
Bounty from the Sea from shrimps, crabs, shells and a wide variety of fishes. I even saw a small shark which made me shook my head.
There are also live chickens and pigs. At the end of the day, their fate lies on those who bought them.
As I looked back at the market on my way home, I told myself, “That was a lot of fun. I should have done this way back when I had more chances to do it.” As I fastened my seatbelt, I told my mom, “Can we do this again next Sunday?” She replied excitedly, “Absolutely.” Like a little boy who just been to an unforgettable amusement park I told her, “For real mom?” She replied with a smile, “For real!”
Travel Theme: Street Market
I hope you enjoyed this week’s Travel Theme called “Street Market.” Remember, take life’s opportunities as they come. Don’t wait for tomorrow and second chances. Sometimes we get lucky and another chance pops up but not everyone gets a similar luck. Today might be the “only” opportunity for us. So, we should grab it while we can.
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