Today here on Chesterfield Market is a good day - we are set up, new stock, a busy crowd of shoppers and some smiles here and there.  The main reason for the cheer is that the weather is improved and for us traders, as we loaded up the van it was not pitch dark.

The onset of early morning light is the sign that spring is on its way and with every passing week we have lighter days, better mornings and even the hope of more sunshine and less biting wind.

Getting up when it is dark, unloading your storage shed, packing up the van if your friend and driving down to Chesterfield Market to set up a book stall takes a special type of madness.  But, despite all of those elements, it is something I have come to enjoy and appreciate.

This morning the weather is brutal and deceptive - it has rained during the night so although wet under-foot we are dry, there is a touch and a smile of sunshine in the sky but the face of the sun is clouded so we are not arm, but then there is the wind.  This wind this morning is cruel and sharp cold. Indeed I am genuinely struggling to type this right now are the breeze is giving me such frozen fingers.

It's Thursday morning here on Chesterfield Market and I'm doing my books and bric-a-brac stall.

For me it's the first of the new year as I was away in the first week and stuck down by full on proper flu the week after - but today we are back and trading.  Now as I think I have mentioned before I have recently taken on a large amount of stock which I am gradually working through and sorting.  Today was the second such outing of new stock and it has generated quite a little stir of interest.

It's that time of the week when I rise early and lug the pre-prepared boxes out to load  up the vehicle and shamble down to the Market Place in Chesterfield for a day standing selling books and selected bric-a-brac.

Of all the things I thought I might be doing on a weekly basis this is not one of them - but love it and enjoy it I do so somehow the getting up early seems bearable.

So this is the last stall if the calendar year and I'm still here.  It's cold and sharp this morning but I decided that in for a week, in for the year.  There are fewer stall holders standing the market this morning but I'm here and set up.

But today I have a new entry to the set up of the stall - my Uncle has effectively retired from the book trade - he's going to concentrate on Islamic and Indian art - and so I have gained his residual stock.  This sounds like a small thing - but in fact it is a significant injection of 68 boxes of books.