Dixie Draft Horse, Mule and Carriage Auction, Troutman NC November 2011
Twice a year (the weekend after Thanksgiving and the last weekend in March) a tremendous crowd gathers to buy and sell horses, mules, not nearly enough donkeys, tack, carriages, and rusty stuff. About seven auctioneers at a time are gabbling away (sometimes they seem to be speaking in tongues, sometimes they sound like Porky Pig) and selling things - sometimes for much more than they seem to be worth (I saw two 'flying pigs' on sticks go for $25 each) and sometimes much less (a brand new crib with a brand new mattress went for $1.00). I am now the proud owner of a whole pallet-load of miscellaneous fencing (some is rusty) which I got for $10.
I should explain that where you see a lot of people, that's where the auctioneers are (they get driven up and down the rows standing in the back of golf carts while the assistants hold up the often arcane items for sale). Where there are just a few people, either those few are waiting for the auctioneer to get to their desired items, or they are just chewing the fat and resting between exhausting sessions of waving their numbers in the air and buying stuff. Or perhaps they had just finished chewing the fat: there were enough greasy delights being gobbled down to send almost anyone into a catatonic digestive stupor.