Candice and I were downtown bright and early at 9 a.m. to do our weekly shopping at the Silver Spring FreshFarm Farmers Market. (Julie at Evensong Farm sells out of her eggs quickly, so the early bird gets the worm…or, more appropriately, the best eggs in the Washington area!) We now buy more than half of our weekly groceries at the Silver Spring Farmers Market, and today was no exception. As I was waiting for Candice to pick through the ears of corn at the Spring Valley Farm stand, I looked up and saw this beehive of activity around food, flowers, and community – and couldn’t resist the shot.
After making our stops at Talking Breads (the scone this week was especially tasty with my eggs at breakfast), North Cove Mushrooms (for our usual pound of shiitake and oyster mushrooms), Blue Ridge Dairy (love the butter and Greek Yogurt) and many more stands too numerous to mention, Candice commented on how the sights at this week’s market made her reflect on the bounty of the earth. We eat so well because these wonderful people work so hard to provide us with tasty and healthy food. Thank you all!
My Silver Spring day actually began even earlier, as I jumped on my bike shortly after 7 this morning for an hour’s ride along Sligo Creek. We have this little gem of a park that provides numerous places to walk, ride, and just enjoy some of the prettiest scenery anywhere. The humidity was low this morning and the temperature was very mild – the perfect conditions for one of my favorite activities.
After the bike ride and the market, it was time to get a haircut at the United Nations of barber shops: Raphael’s Barber Shop just a block-and-a-half from our house. Tamara is the owner and she cuts my hair, while we catch up on kids, travel, and stories of Georgia (the country) – her native home. Ebrahim has been there the longest of the other barbers, and his son now works in the shop as well. So besides the Republic of Georgia, other parts of the world represented among the barbers include a couple of countries in the Middle East and Asia. It is great – many of the folks there are regulars and everyone is treated like an old friend. I told Tamara today that I’d come every Saturday to get my hair cut if I could afford it – and she encouraged that thought, saying she needed to build her retirement fund!
Afterwards, I went one block from Raphael’s to one of the great craft beer shops in the region: Fenwick Beer and Wine. (Don’t just believe me, as they were voted “Best Place to Buy Beer” in the DC area by the readers of City Paper two years in a row in 2013 and 2014.) Claire has developed a taste for I.P.A.s, so with her home for a couple of weeks I stopped by to pick up a few offerings. Of course, I decided to try the Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale from Boulevard Brewing Company in Kansas City with my lunch today…so it wasn’t all for Claire’s benefit!
Tonight we’ll actually have to get in the car and leave Silver Spring – but our trip still has a connection to home. Andrew is part of the National Symphony Orchestra Chorus singing at Wolf Trap tonight to accompany the epic 1968 movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. The music is very challenging (three singers per part, with some sections having measures in 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 beats to the measure all at the same time!) Andrew says he has seldom had to concentrate so hard to make sure he doesn’t get lost. We’ll take a picnic to the park – and enjoy some of the great food we bought this morning.
So Andrew will help wrap up our beautiful day in Silver Spring…even if we are down in Virginia at the time.
More to come…