Time to relax.
The market is finally over and I (we?) was counting the days until it ended. That is somehow relevant to my peace of mind and should be factored into what we do next year. As of now, I feel like I am done with it all. I have zero interest in doing it again, though admittedly I feel like this every year. This year seemed particularly challenging, for a number of reasons. First off, we are busy as heck, especially with A in school and N embracing more challenging academics. Secondly, both mom and dad are exceptionally busy with our respective jobs. And lastly but not "leastly," the market has been somewhat disappointing, and believe me when I tell you that just a tiny bit of disappointment with something you don't necessarily enjoy doing can be the kiss of death to any endeavor.
I'm not sure why, but this year the market was exceedingly slow. Maybe it's the economy, but people just aren't coming out. I've spoken with several other vendors and they all have said the same thing, so it's not just me. It seems like an ideal location with all the college folks milling about, but that has not translated into mega-sales. I think every year our take has increased until this year, where it definitely dropped. On our last two days, which previously had been very profitable, it was amazingly slow. Part of the problem is selling prepared foods to a student body that is forced to buy a meal plan at the school. Why eat anywhere else? Then again, these are kids with money, so it might not be an issue.
The other problem is the weather. On more than a few occasions we got socked with bad weather. We skipped the entire month of June and I was told it was slow and rainy. We skipped August, as well, which was slow and miserably hot. You just can't win. At some point you have to question whether this is worth it, and as of now, the answer is a resounding "no." I think the kids would agree. It's nice doing something with the whole family, and I think we really got a lot out of the experience, but they are getting older and I think there are better uses for our time. Then again, we'll see how we feel next year when the registration materials come in the mail.
Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Giulia Geraci for the pic.