Oh the Joys of Flea Marketing!

I realize that I am an easily entertained individual. Wandering amidst piles of random stuff that no-one else really wants makes me happy. That is the reason why I like flea markets. It is a good thing that I don't go to such places very frequently, because if I did, I probably wouldn't have mountains of books, old jewelry, and the like spilling out of every nook and cranny.

Mom and I want flea marketing the other day. Poor Mom! Flea markets have the ability to bring out the wild, creative, spendthrift of a visionary in me, and Mom's attempts at talking reason are sadly wasted. The following conversation is only slightly embellished for dramatic effect.

"Mom! Look at this necklace! It's only fifty cents!"

"Umm...would you actually wear that?"

"Oh no! I'd take it apart and use the beads for a different project."

"But you already have lots of beads."

"I know, but I don't have any like this! Oooh! And look at these candle sconces! I could use them when I re-decorate my room."

"I didn't know you were planning to re-decorate your room."

"Well, I wasn't, but I could maybe find some other things that match these, and it would look amazing...Anyway, the sconces would work really nicely on either side of my copy of the Magna Charta."

"You have a copy of the Magna Charta?"

"Yeah, it was in with a bunch of Grandpa's old stuff that no-one else wanted. I figured it would be a cool thing to hang on my wall. I just keep forgetting to buy a screw anchor so I can hang it up."

"Are you sure you want those sconces? They're in pretty bad shape."

"Well, I bet I could tighten the screws and give them a fresh coat of paint. They'd be all right."

"I don't know. I think the screws are stripped."

And then there was the book store. Heaps of books everywhere. Mom fled to a remote corner of the flea market, leaving me to literary bliss. I peered and poked and rummaged. I climbed on a stool to inspect the top shelves, and knelt on the dirty concrete floor to survey the bottom ones. I discovered an ever-increasing number of books that I simply could not live without, though when Mom at last re-appeared, she managed to talk me out of buying a few of them. She also tried to maneuver me tactfully out of the store without accumulating any more reading material.

"We need to go now, Janie."

"Yeah, you're right, we should...oh, what's this book? Illustrated by Alan Lee? OH MY GOODNESS! I love Alan Lee! And what's this one? A book about Pakistan. That would probably be interesting."

"Look. The owner's back. Why don't you see if she'll give you a discount since you're buying so many books."

This tactic got me all the way to the front of the store, and I was momentarily distracted by the business of bartering. I got my deal, shelled out the cash, and Mom headed me towards the door.

"Alright, Janie. Let's go."

"OK. Oh wait! What's this book? Best Loved Poems of the American People. I'll bet that would be a really nice book."

"Yeah, but we really need to go."

I made it out the door this time. I sighed regretfully over all of the amazing books that I hadn't had a chance to look at, but was solaced by all the reading material in the Wal-Mart bag over my arm. Now that I'm able to look over my purchases in a slightly more sane state of mind, I don't really regret any of them. The seven books I will undoubtedly  devour in the course of a week or two. The sconces (not the aforementioned broken ones) really will look smashing once I have painted them, and the small duffel bag will be perfect for packing for short visits once I have rid it if  the pervading odor of cigarette smoke. All in all, I'm satisfied.