In the small downtown near where I live we have a small farmer's market, which opens on Sundays and Wednesdays from May through the third week of October. The goods range from honey, cookies, bread, hand-made goods, and, of course, actual farm produce. I go pretty much for the farm produce. As the season is coming to an end I know I am going to dearly miss fresh tomatoes, parsley, cilantro, carrots, cauliflower, green beans, corn, and other such wonderful produce, and I will have to go back to relying on whatever is available at the supermarket.
Real home-grown tomatoes will be among the things I will miss the most. I have a favorite vendor from whom I have been buying my tomatoes throughout the season. They have wonderful grape tomatoes and chocolate cherry tomatoes. A treat that will be missed during the winter months.
A side benefit to the farmer's market is that the vendors are friendly and fun to talk with while picking out the goodies I am going to take home. This particular stall has a young man, still only a teenager, who is hard working, and always cordial and helpful. A couple of Sundays ago I overheard him talking to a lady next to me, and he mentioned to her that tomatoes are really a fruit and not a vegetable. After she made her purchase and left and he came over to attend to me, and I joked with him about how I thought it was still hard for me to think of tomatoes as being a fruit, even though I knew that to be true. He smiled and said, "they say that that is the difference between knowledge and wisdom."
"Ok," I said, " I give up. How do tomatoes define the difference between knowledge and wisdom?"
"Well," he replied, "knowledge is knowing that the tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting them in a fruit salad."
And that is why I love going to the farmer's market. It's not just the great fresh produce and ambiance. It is the people who work with the earth and are grounded in the earth. There is both knowledge and wisdom to be gained from the experience.