I was passing by the pretty little town of Carnation, and I have a friend who lives there, so I asked her if she’d like to meet for dinner. We arranged to meet at 6, but I actually got there around 1 o’clock. I had a lot of time to kill. It was my first visit, and it seemed like a charming town, so I decided to do a little exploring.
My first stop was Remlinger Farms. It includes a market, a restaurant using ingredients from the farm, and a Family Fun Park, which unfortunately is only opened on the weekends. I would have liked to have gone through the corn maze. I do love a good corn maze.
The market had a wealth of fresh vegetables, along with preserves, sauces, and pickled items, and a huge amount of country crafts of every description. I bought myself a potholder with jalapeno peppers all over it. Everyone needs one of those.
I went into the restaurant and had some delicious homemade vegetable soup and a slice of carrot cake made from farm grown ingredients. If I could have married this cake, I would have. Instead, I ate it. After seeing everything that was open to see at the farm, I headed back into town.
According to Wikipedia, Carnation is just slightly over one square mile in size, and has a population of 1,786. Needless to say, it didn’t take long to explore, but I did check out two very different thrift shops, and even bought a cute little red dress in one of them. (Now I just need an occasion to wear it!)
The owner of the shop then recommended I check out the yarn store two doors down. I’m not a knitter, but why not? And I have to admit it was a beautiful, colorful, well designed store. If their sweater examples had been up for sale, I’d have probably spent a fortune. But they were only there for inspiration for those buying the yarn. Pity.
Next I walked over to the farmer’s market. It’s open every Tuesday afternoon. I had high hopes, but there were only 8 vendors. Granted, they had quality items to sell. Vegetables, baked goods, crafts, soaps, and sandwiches. That used up a good 15 minutes.
Then I went and sat in a beautiful park. And people waved and smiled and even stopped to chat as they walked by. In fact, everywhere I went I was made to feel quite welcome. That’s the beauty of a small town.
When my friend showed up, we went back through the farmer’s market on the way to the restaurant, and everyone knew her by name. That’s a sense of community you just don’t get in a big city. I liked it.
Could I live in Carnation? My usual litmus test for a livable locale is that I can get pizza delivered. If that’s the case, I couldn’t live there. But there are two restaurants that serve pizza, so maybe I could make an exception, just purely for the atmosphere.
It was a lovely, low stress, small town day. I need more of those in my life. I’m sure I’ll be back.