Canton, Texas features the First Monday Trades Day. It's the largest flea market in the country,and supposedly in the world. It takes place during the weekend with the first Monday in it each month.
My wife and I drove to meet our friend Gene in Canton so that we could all hit the flea market midway. We all arrived at our meeting place, a Wal-Mart, by 8 a.m., and were at the trades day lots by 8:30.
Things were moving a bit slow, so we stopped in the huge indoor mall Market Center next door. They advised us that First Monday no longer has Monday session.
It was a Monday without First Monday.
We enjoyed the large market center, where more than one merchant saw fit to disparage the flea market not in session. "But that's just junk" one in all other respects frightfully polite east Texas vendor murmured, in her charmingly polite voice (as is the way of the frightfully polite culture in east Texas, which is practically the same country as my beloved homeland in Arkansas). I was too polite to rejoin "but it's the junk I really came to see!". We enjoyed shopping in the large antiques mall, and then left sans merchandise (and fleas).
We are in the lemonade business, so we set out to drive to nearby Lake Fork, which is known as one of the top x number of bass fishing lakes in the country. We did not wish to fish, but to hike. We stopped at a bait shop and gas station and asked "where is the
state park?". The man behind the counter advised me that Lake Fork has no state park, but allowed as how it would be nice if it did. The hiking portion of our trip segued into a cool drive through rural east Texas, where yellow coreopsis alternated with cowsills, the air was cool (80's), and cows and goats thrived. Gene had brought along a copy of the Residents' Commercial Album, which I love and which he had brought to give to me to keep because he knows how fond I am of the Residents.
We stopped in Mineola, a charming older town of 5,000, and shopped in its antique mall.
I bought a sack of Anasazi beans, which are desert beans which taste like the most jazzed-up sweet pinto beans one ever tasted. I will cook them up next weekend. We then
headed to a cafe called Kitchens, which served up sandwiches and soups we thoroughly enjoyed.
We drove home, with but a brief excursion to the Tanger outlet mall in Terrell on the way. We had a great time, though everything we did came out differently than we planned.
Nobody was upset or even dampened about the changes of plans, though, because all 3 of us are used to that being the rule, rather than the exception, when travelling with me.