I Miss Flea World

I will always remember Sunday mornings at Flea World, America’s “largest flea market under one roof.” I’d drive to Sanford, get a giant draft beer around 10am, and check out the craziest collection of stuff for sale and the craziest collection of people buying it all.

Live birds and fresh pickles, car stereos and haircuts, bootleg “Scarface” t-shirts and trail mix by the pound. It was all laid out in rows and rows and rows and rows of open-air stalls. My big thing was to go through all the used CDs. I’d usually leave with two or three – plus some weird Chinese knock-off action figure and a pack of Tiger Blood incense.

I could only handle the sensory overload every couple of months, madness in the best way. You’d see families still in their church clothes, aromatic chain-smokers in three different camo patterns, and super-tan stretch pants grannies. It all shut down in August of 2015 and the Flea World land is probably going to be developed, some day, into apartments and office space. Maybe we need that stuff – maybe – but Flea World was something that will never be duplicated. Here’s some photos I took about a month before it all went away.