Toby Gerhart Jersey ,California will close after a 51 year run. Everything has its price and clearly the price for health care has been steadily rising. After all, what are the margins for a drive-in and flea market and why should anyone care?
Obviously not Sutter Medical who bought the property. The fourteen acres in question is private property, Sutter bought it and end of story. Well, not quite the end of the story. The flea community may soon be dissolved but the people will still continue. These are the small business people, collectors, farmworkers, recyclers, junk men, families, hobbyists, lonely hearts and the mentally borderline who want or need something other than ball games and political TV gossip on the weekends. Folks that make the world go round.
Folks like Lupe, a 41 year old farmworker mother that sells to make ends meet yet always wants to give us free stuff. And Sam, a 62 year old retiree that dislikes his wife so he spends flea market days flirting with anyone that will pay him attention. And Marvin, a 44 year old mentally disabled man that visits the market to socialize since almost all his time is spent by himself in his room.
And Carl, an antiques dealer who for 20 years has been shopping the flea for antiques and collectibles for his store. Sara, an antiques dealer that started liquidating her inventory ever since the antiques and collectibles market started to slip. Nguyen, a student at San Jose State who sells cheap goods out of a box van to pay his way through college.
Josefina Telvin Smith Jersey , a Salinas mother of two, sells fruits and vegetables to augment her family's income from the fields and teach her children a strong work ethic. Jacobo works as a custodian for the flea in the winters when there is no field work. Jake works as a market security guard to support his wife and three children. Cindy works in the concession stand to pay her way through Cabrillo Junior College.
Laughing John, a reseller of curios and collectibles, drives each Sunday all the way from Fremont. Bartolo, a locker buyer from Castroville who has been dealing junk for over 30 years, will have to find a new line of work. Arn, who visits his ex-students and stops to talk art with those he meets, will no longer be able to regularly see so many of his old friends. Bill, an artist and furniture maker who buys old and damaged furniture, fixes it up and sells it to supplement his social security, will obviously have to find a new source.
Intellectual Pat, one of the most knowledgeable antiques dealers around has been instructing his 'students' at the flea market for decades. No mas. Bob and Julie drive from Turlock to sell almonds from their orchard. Linda the hat lady arrives in her VW rabbit with hats stacked to the roof. Amanda sells cheap LA warehouse surplus so she and her husband can go to Reno and gamble.
David, who sells designer pants and shirts at about the best prices around, drives from Milpitas and has a wife and two kids. Bill from the Westside has been selling tools, music and just about anything else at the flea for over 25 years. Elvy, just about the sweetest lady you will ever meet, buys stuff at garage sales on Saturdays that she resells on Sundays to help pay for clothes and expenses for her three school-aged daughters.
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