Sunday, August 1, 2010
Look up...Look waaaay up
There is something exciting about a fair. I really like going at night -- all the lights, the noise, the crowds. This year we went during the day. We rode rides that were dangerous, ate food that was bad for us (mmmm...elephant ears...), ignored "carnies" who wanted us to lose money on their games. It was great.
I haven't been on crazy rides for a few years now. When my daughter was younger, we stuck to the kiddie rides which was thrilling for her. Then.
Now she is eleven and is a pure adrenaline junkie. She wanted to do the rides that would make Evil Knievil shudder. Her daddy is a bit limited as to the rides he can partake in. He is one of the unfortunates who get nauseous just doing a donut in the car. So the responsibility was laid in my capable hands.
We first walked around and picked which rides we would definitely try so we knew how many tickets to purchase. We rode ride after ride -- some were delightful and made me giggle. Others were terrifying and my laughter sounded more like a deranged cat lady. But I would not let my adrenaline-seeking daughter know I had the slightest bit of fear. I wanted to be the cool mom who did all the crazy rides. The mom who looked death square in the eye and laughed out loud while shouting, Ïs that all you've got!"
One ride in particular really tested my limits. I can't remember the name, but there are about three carts dangling off a long arm. There are approximately five or six arms that extend out from the centre. As the ride gets moving, the arms spin in a circle. The carts, dangling from this arm also spin in a circle. The music is loud and the wind is blowing through your hair. My feet, at this point, are glued to the floor of the cart and I cling to the flimsy bar across my lap. Okay, I smile to myself, "this ride rocks!" I catch the occasional glimpse of my hubby on the ground shaking his head and probably wondering what is wrong with me.
Now the ride is speeding up (if that is at all possible) and I have realized the cart we are in is now spinning perpendicular to the ground and the ride has now reached warp speed. I hear this manic giggle and realize it is me. I shout out to my daughter (over music which is ear-splittingly loud), Äre you okay?"
Äre you kidding? This is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I was hoping to be the stronger one. Clearly my role has been overtaken by an eleven year old. I am now the one needing consolation. I am the one who wants to get off this crazy ride.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity of waiting for the cart to snap off and hurl through the air, I feel the ride slowing down. The kind ex-con operator of this contraption thanks us, ever so politely, for coming on the ride.
My legs hit the ground and they are pretty wobbly. Ökay. That's it for me. I am done!" I knew I just couldn't do another ride like that. It is at this point my daughter points across the crowd and says, "Let's finish with that one!" It is just as I have feared. The Drop of Doom.
Let me catch you up on this one. You are sitting in a chair, strapped in, and sitting in a circle around the center post. Click, click, click. The ride slowly inches you up, up, up until you reach the top. At the last second you are dropped about 20 or 30 feet back down to the ground in a two-second period of time.
Okay, I psych myself up, I have just done the worst ride ever. This is going to be a cakewalk. We all pile onto the ride and up we climb. Click, click, click. We climb higher and higher. At this point we are at least 15 feet higher than the next tallest ride. Oh Sugar Honey Iced Tea! Maybe now would be the point of the story where I tell you I am terrified of heights! I know we are almost at the top and there is nothing I can do. I can't even brace my feet on the floor of the ride because my legs are just dangling with nothing underneath them. Then I hear it. Snap. I am now free-falling through the air and I hear myself screaming out for my mommy. We reach the bottom and I swear to God, myself and my family that I will never ride that deathtrap again in my life.