Canton, TX. Population 5000. Best known as the largest flea market in the world (according to that most reliable source….Wikipedia). Let me clarify for you. I didn’t say that it is known for having the largest flea market in the world, it is known as the largest flea market in the world. I mean the entire town is the flea…not just the parking lot, or random field. The entire town.
Here’s a recap of our one morning turned two full day excursion to Canton. We arrived to the town on Friday morning. Not until four in the afternoon did we finally find what we were looking for: the village of outdoor vendors with all the mounds and mounds of beautiful junk. Until that point we treaded all through the town and pavilions filled with bedazzled jeans, socks, nuts, soap, hair bows, and dog pillows.
But alas, the village of our kind of people. The junkers.
I really loved how these vendors lived. These were folks that had been selling at Canton for years. Husband and wife load up the camper, unload their stuff at their vending site. Sell during the day, catch up with vending neighbors they’ve known for the last 20 t0 30 years at night before turning in a few yards away from their booth. Love it.
Here’s a joke I overhead told by one of the vendors to another while we were shopping the booth.
There’s this boy who’s parents were gettin’ a deevorce. The social worker asked the kid which parent he wanted to live with. He said, “I don’t want to live with my Ma, ’cause she beats me!”
“Well, what about your Pop?” the social worker asked.
“I don’t want to live with him neither, ’cause he beats me, too!” the boy said.
“Is there anybody else that you think you’d like to live with?”
“Yeah, I’d like to live with the Dallas Cowboys. They never beat nobody!” the boy concluded.
I am not a football fan, nor do I care one way or the other about the Cowboys. I am not a good joke teller, and I am not one to remember them. I don’t really invite jokes into conversation by myself or others. But for some reason, this man and his joke telling really made feel at home in this area of the flea. We immediately made plans to come back to this site the next morning to finish our tour of the area.
We called up Aunt Jena of Crandall (a town about 45 mins. away) to see if she could set us up for the night. She immediately let us under her wing in her beautiful arts and crafts style home. It’s always a pleasure to spend time with her under her roof to hear stories of how she came across all her beautiful furniture pieces…many of which were found in Canton.
Day two arrives along with the near freezing temperatures and gusts of what felt like 70 MPH. That didn’t stop us from collecting all this fine loot you see below.
We got what we went to Canton for, and so much more. We will probably be visiting again and remember the tricks we picked up this past weekend.
Some tidbits include:
1. Shopping just before closing: better deals + happy vendors to offload = everyone happy
2. Take your own food so not to be weighed down by the indugences of all the food vendors. The food is TOO good.
3. Bring a wheeled cart or wagon for your finds.
4. The vendors are kind enough to hold onto your goods. Write down their location because it’s so easy to get lost among the sea of stuff.
5. Know what you’re looking for before you take off with lots of stuff you don’t need. It’s easy to get overwhelmed.
We picked up more inventory that we could not fit into the picture full of China. And we’re expecting a couple more loads at the doorstep hopefully before midnight. Stay tuned for more to come….
Rhoda and Anna