Saturday, 13 September 2014

Market Day

On Thursday, I decided to pay a visit to a favourite haunt of mine, a good old East London market.  It's a proper East End market, one of the few left and has stalls selling all kinds of things from fruit and vegetables, home ware, books, clothes, shoes, fabric, sewing trims, etc.  It's been a few months since I've managed to get there.

It's quite a big market, stretching virtually the length of the high street and it's great to saunter up and down and take in the stalls and their merchandise.  The market opens on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, to my knowledge. (It may be open on other days, but these are the only days I have ever visited). 
Today, the market was very busy.  The weather was a bit grey, but at least it wasn't raining, as the number of stalls sometimes reduces with bad weather.  To me, this is the real London, it is busy, diverse, down to earth and real.  Normal people going about their daily business.  I enjoy the buzz and listening to the banter of the stall holders, which often makes me smile.

Now, I know you might be thinking, that I'm supposed to be participating in No Spend/Low Spend September, but I was very good, honest.  I had a short list of a few vital things that we needed, such as fruit and vegetables, snacks for school, a birthday card, etc. and I stuck to it, well almost. 

There are several stalls at the market, that I particularly enjoy perusing.  One is a book stall and it is the first stall you encounter when you step out of the car park.  Usually this stall sells hard backed books for £2 and paperbacks for £1, but today for some reason, the gentleman stallholder was selling all of the books at £1 each or 3 for £2.  Amazing value.  I have succumbed many times to books sold on this stall, all of which I've really enjoyed reading.  It's a gem.  
Today, I really couldn't miss the chance to buy two small stocking fillers for Christmas and a book for me, all for £2 in total. All the books are new and it was a bargain that I just couldn't ignore.  Here are the books I bought.  The two on the right are the ones I bought as gifts.  I won't say who they are for, just in case they might read this.

Another favourite stall is this sewing trim stall.  If ever I need zips, elastic, cotton, etc. for my sewing endeavours, I tend to come here for them   As you can see, they are very reasonably priced.  I didn't purchase anything today though, but the colours were wonderful.  This is my equivalent of a sweet shop.
The fruit and vegetable stalls are also good value and you can buy large bowls of virtually anything for just £1.
(Please excuse the fuzzy lines in this photograph.  It was taken through reinforced glass on my way down the stairs of the car park building.)
I bought a bowl of nectarines (14 fruit to be exact), a bowl of avocados (8 fruit) and a bowl of bananas, each for £1.  Very good value.  The avocados need a little ripening, but a few days in the fruit bowl with the bananas should do the job.  Where else could I buy this many for so little money? 
There's usually a stall that sells Clarks shoes that I can never resist checking out.  I have bought some lovely boots here in the past for £30.  Unfortunately, today they weren't there, but there's always next time.

As you can imagine, it is always very tempting when I come here, especially as there are also a myriad of fabric and other shops up and down the high street, some of which I just have to check out, for strictly business purposes only, of course.  It's just as well that I don't get here as often as I used to any more.  In fact, I did make a couple of small purchases of a business nature, from a couple of the fabric shops, but that is a whole other matter and comes from a different budget entirely.

Consequently, for once I miraculously returned home with my personal budget largely intact.  Do you have a favourite place or market where you like to go and shop occasionally?

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