Jake, me and C went to our first farmers’ market this morning. I love love love the Saturday A.M. market and had been missing it since I started taming the wild Seabass. It was once a regular and cherished appointment I had with myself; suited in my grubby weekend clothes and armed with a cup of coffee in one hand and shopping list in the other, I used to wander the rows of fresh fruits and vegetables for as long as I wanted. There were rambling visits with friends and idle chit-chat with farmers. I was the portrait of leisure.
So this morning’s trip was a little different than that to which I’m accustomed. For starters, I was no longer alone. Now I had a sensitive nine-week-old and a nervous dad pushing baby around in the stroller – not exactly the recipe for relaxation. Also, we’re coming to the crest of the summer fruits and vegetable wave and I can eat neither tomatoes nor strawberries due to breastfeeding. Can you say criminal? I spent half my time leering at the tomatoes and strawberries from afar, imagining what they taste like, smell like, feel like. Father forgive me, for I have lusted.
While I didn’t get to drink coffee around the market (breastfeeding strikes again!) I did manage to chat briefly with a few friends. But after the stroller paused en route for more than about 43 seconds, Seabass became anxious to move on. When he finally started launching into the “you-pushed-it-too-far-Mom” cry, I decided to get serious about my shopping list. In an attempt to satisfy my craving for summer fruits, I bought an outrageously large watermelon without stopping to think how I would carry it to the car. I looked at Jake. “I guess I could put it in the bottom of the stroller,” I reasoned, but two attempts proved me wrong.
“Here, you push the stroller and I’ll take the melon,” offered Jake. So we traded duties and began our departure through the last row of the market, but a booth selling dried apricots stole my attention. A young girl held a pair of tongs and a basket full of dried apricots, trying to lure passersby into sampling them. Why no one did, I don’t understand. I am the Free Sample Queen.
We must have been 15 t0 20 feet away from the booth, but I set my sights on those tongs and moved in for a delicious dried apricot before realizing I had walked away from the stroller, which was now rolling backwards toward an unsuspecting shopper. Mind you, the baby was in the stroller.
Thankfully, Jake is an alert and aware human being. He turned to see the stroller drifting and snapped me out of my apricot-induced trance just in time. “Jaime?!?!” he called. “Um, the stroller?”
Embarrassed, I ran back to the stroller and looked around to see if anyone caught me being a self-involved idiot. An old man sitting on a stool snickered and told Jake, “You have to keep an eye on the baby and on her!”
“Yeah,” I said sheepishly as we walked away, “I’m not used to being a mother yet. It’s my first time.”