Tonight was "one for the books," and that's just my opinion. I can only imagine what Jackson thought of his first trip to a real fairground.
Today marked the first official day of the Shenandoah County Fair in Woodstock, Virginia . . . and, unsure whether or not we'd find another livestock exhibition, we decided to patronize. I'm so glad we did. Actually--and I hope you're sitting down--this may have trumped the Salem Fair for me.
After grabbing a quick "fair food" dinner of burgers and fries, we embarked on what quickly became one of the most memorable nights we've had since moving west of Washington DC.
Jackson took his very first pony ride as we held our breath. We knew full well this event would be either a bang or a bust.
And it was a bang.
From beginning to end.
And as part of the animal encounter, there was also a free petting zoo that we thoroughly enjoyed. Although I didn't get a picture, my favorite animal was a bird that mocked people. I started giggling over him saying "hello" -- then, he cackled insultingly at me, using my intonation. Oh, how I would love to have him around when I'm aggravated at some telemarketer or rude customer service agent. Just a thought!
Then, as we approached the Midway, mom was drawn to the kettle corn--Justin to the BBQ--and I to the pork rinds. Funny thing--Jackson fancied all three--especially the pork rinds.
And, what's a good fairground without a baby covered in blue lollipop?
As I said before . . . I can only imagine what Jax thought of our evening at the fair!
(note to any critical-granola-fun suckers out there: this is a rarity, and there's nothing wrong with a small dose of junk food every now and again! Thank. You. Very. Much)
Full belly and all, Jackson rode his very first carnival ride tonight as well. I believe it was called the "Dizzy Dragons." Like the pony ride, the petting zoo, and the food--it, too, was a big hit.
Soon, it was dusk--and the evening only got more beautiful . . .
as the sun set and the carnival lights cast their electric glow against the darkness.
This may sound kind of strange--but ever since I was a little girl, the sensory experience of a carnival has always been one of my very favorites.
Close you eyes.
Think about it: the neon lights flickering against the night sky--the sound of children laughing and thrill seekers screaming--the woosh of air as dizzying rides swirl and drop all around you--the smell of sausages, funnel cakes, popcorn, and cotton candy (and, the occasionally unavoidable: vomit)--and the taste of just about anything you can dream up in your wildest imagination.
"Come with me and you'll be, in a world of pure imagination . . . living there you'll be free, if you truly wish to be"
There is precious little time left in the "dog days" of 2011 . . . may you all take a moment to pause and find a place like this to awaken that pure imagination in yourself.