I’ve mentioned before that even though I live in the DC metro area, I hardly make it into downtown DC. I’ve lived in this area on and off since 2002, and there are still some places I haven’t visited, or haven’t visited in a long time. (However, I am moving into the city this week so hopefully I will at least have fewer excuses about why I can’t be bothered to go places in DC!)
Yesterday, I finally made it to one of those places: Eastern Market in southeast DC. I had actually been to the “ballroom” (I didn’t feel it quite lived up to that name) one evening for a dance event, but I had never visited when the market itself was open. In my defense, the friend I went with has lived here longer than me and hadn’t been either. I think the irony often is that when you live in a city and can visit these amazing spots whenever you want, you get complacent about visiting them.
I really enjoyed my trip to Eastern Market. First off, I was able to find a parking spot nearby (that’s always the first challenge in DC, or any city for that matter). Second, it wasn’t too cold, although it did start snowing a little in the early afternoon. Third, and most importantly, I saw plenty of interesting things and tasted some delicious food.
It would be very easy to spend way too much money at a market like this. I especially wanted to avoid accumulating any new things since I’m moving this week. Unfortunately, I wasn’t entirely successful, but the things I bought (mostly) weren’t for me.
There are some great artisans at Eastern Market – selling jewelry, stuffed animals, purses, paintings, etc. At one booth I found the perfect present for my mother, which I went ahead and bought even though her birthday isn’t until April. The artist makes wooden racks that you can hang up to keep your keys, coat, purse, etc., out of reclaimed materials. The one that made me break my promise of not buying anything was made out of an old board game, which my mom collects. As the woman checked me out on her iPhone, I couldn’t help but think how much easier selling your art must be in settings like this nowadays than back in the days of cash or checks.
And the free food samples! Those always make me happy. I tried some delicious aged gouda, some fresh sliced apple, goat milk caramel (I had no idea that was even a thing), and different kinds of hummus. I did buy myself one container of hummus (white bean with artichoke and capers – yum!), but believe me, it will be gone before I move so it doesn’t really break my rule about accumulating things.
I’m glad I finally went to Eastern Market, and while it’s not some place I’ll have reason to go regularly, I think it will be good for Christmas shopping, etc. Definitely a must see place when you visit DC (or even if you live here!)
Here’s a challenge: Think of a place in the city you live in that you’ve been meaning to go, or rethink visiting some place you’ve previously written off as not worth your time, and actually go there! And be sure to let me know how it goes!