Next Stop – Candle Stick Maker

Charles Porter
Thu 11 Jan 2024

I’ve always loved a market. Probably a good job I ended up working in one in the form of the foreign exchange market. As those new joiners (un)fortunate enough to join my team will find out, I don’t see financial markets as all that different to those traditional non-financial markets. They are governed by the same dynamics of supply and demand where prices are discovered between buyers and sellers. Perhaps I’m post-hoc justifying my love for markets by romanticising them – maybe it’s just the top-quality produce on offer at discounted prices that attracts me. Scratch the maybe, it almost certainly is that.

My recent trip to Spain saw me frequent Cartagena’s food market far more times than anyone might think necessary. Continental Europe seems to so comprehensively put our regional markets in the UK to shame. London’s wholesale produce markets like New Covent Garden, Billingsgate and Smithfield aside, I’d take my chances with even the most obscure and underpopulated markets in Europe over the likes of Borough or Spitalfields. Cartagena’s market was a real gem. There was a wonderful variety of fresh fish and other delicacies. My Spanish language skills are still all but non-existent. Fortunately, whilst the names of the fish are unintelligible to me in Spanish, the fish themselves still look the same as they do over in Blighty!

My colleagues will be all too familiar with my tales (often of woe) of a post Smithfield visit meat butchering fiasco. More recently I’ve been getting stuck into baking bread. With the new year having just been ushered in, I’ve been thinking. What’s next.. Whilst both nouns should be prefixed by the word ‘underwhelming’, I say, butchery and bakery endeavours complete. So as the rhyme goes, next stop candle stick maker?! Hmm better check that fire extinguisher still works first. 

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