Monthly Archives: October 2012

Fair Days

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So it was my first time ever to the State Fair of Texas last week. I’ve lived in Texas off and on for the past 13 years and I’ve never made it once. We decided to head to the fair while my mom was in town, mostly because we wanted to get her on that ferris wheel since she’s completely and utterly afraid of heights!

When we were teenagers we went to an amusement park called Michigan Adventure. We tried so hard to get her onto one of the roller coasters. She finally agreed to give “Zack’s Zoomer” a chance. Let me preface this by saying “Zack’s Zoomer” was a roller coaster for CHILDREN . Not just a smaller scale roller coaster, but an actual ride for kids. I’m not even sure there were seat belts. She screamed the entire length of the ride and wouldn’t let go of the grip she had on that bar to save her life. Of course like the good children that we are, we like to tease her about it any opportunity we get.

So we spent the afternoon/night wandering the midways checking out cars, livestock, extreme BMX stunt riders, all things fried food, and a variety of bands. We managed to get the best chair massage ever, catch the parade, ride on the gondola thing, see  a mulit-sensory fireworks/pyro show and most importantly get our picture taken in front of Big Tex the icon of the Texas State Fair since 1952. Did you know that Big Tex was once a giant Santa Claus constructed to bring commerce to a small town in Texas? He stands 52ft tall, wears a size 70 boot and a 75 gallon hat on his head. Interesting.

If you hadn’t noticed, the ONE thing we didn’t manage to do was actually ride that ferris wheel! Once we made our way over to it, we found that it was closed for maintenance that day. Total bummer. Maybe another time, the weather was beautiful though and it finally started feeling a little bit like fall!

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Surprise, Surprise.

Would you look at that, it’s been exactly one month since my last update. No excuses other than sheer laziness and extreme busyness. Contradictions? Right. They’re both however true. Excuses are not what I’m here for though. I came to tell you about a giant surprise that I got two weeks ago. It’s hard to believe that it was already two weeks ago, but that’s where that extreme busyness comes in to play. My brother took a trip to Michigan to visit our family and then headed to Indiana for the wedding of one of his college roommates. I planned to pick him up late on Thursday night from the airport when he arrived back. I was trying not to have to circle the airport 5 times since I was a bit early, so I was keeping a watchful eye out for him exiting the building while slowly creeping along. Just as the security officer was waving at me to get a move on it,  I turned to look and there he was.  Not only with his backpack behind him, but another special traveler. My jaw hit the middle console…surprise! It was my mom. I couldn’t believe me eyes and I didn’t really have to time to either, because by this time the security officer was shooing us out of the way. We managed to get out of the airport and I managed to form words with my mouth besides “Whaat?!” My mom had been telling me she wanted to come visit for my birthday, but that time had come and gone and the ticket prices had been outrageous! She happened to find a decent airfare and decided to go for it. That’s one of the things I love about my mom, she is one of thee most spontaneous people I have ever encountered. It’s great. I later found out that every single person in my family slipped up along the way and pretty much gave it away that she was coming to surprise me. I must have been really preoccupied, because I didn’t suspect a thing. Not even a smidgen.

I just have to tell you though about our one crazy day when nothing seemed to go our way, nothing at all. My mom happened to plan to come on the last weekend of the month which also happens to correlate with the “First Mondays” Flea Market in Canton, Tx. We had been talking for awhile about wanting to go together. I never really thought it would happen, but here she was on the right days! Although I had informed her that the name “First Mondays” was rather deceiving since the flea market wasn’t actually open on Mondays, only the weekend before the first Monday of each month. She somehow missed this vital information (all 4 times I gave it to her) and had planned on going on Monday, my day off. I informed her we would have to go on Sunday, but my brother was also leading the praise and worship at our church that week. Of course our mother couldn’t miss that, so we decided to leave as soon as church was over and high tail it the hour and twenty minutes it takes to get to Canton.

We got a late start…go figure. Let’s add to that a stop for gas and a stop at the drive thru of Wendy’s for a quick bite to eat. By this time we’re still doing okay. Not great, but still okay. We’re driving on 1-35 about to exit onto I-20 when some guys in a truck next to us start honking and pointing at us. I knew right then that unfortunately they weren’t just cat calling at us:), but that we must have had a flat tire or something could quite possibly have just fallen off our vintage Buick Century. We pulled over to asses the damage and sure enough…flat tire. We were right near a Wal-Mart, so we decided our best bet would be to go and get the flat fixed. Hoping and praying that they wouldn’t be busy on a Sunday afternoon or that they could just get us in and out, I held onto a tiny piece of hope. WRONG. We spent the next hour and a half in the waiting room of the Wal-Mart garage. So much for the flea market. Sad day. We decided not to let it get the best of us, and my mom suggested we find a thrift store. I thought she might like the St. Vincent DePaul, because it’s quite large and it was open until 6:00. We made a pit stop at Oddfellows for cappuccinos since coffee can just about always make everything better. Then headed about 20 minutes farther north into Dallas to the thift store. Upon arriving (an hour before they were supposed to close), we found that for some reason on that day only,  they had closed early. Whomp, whomp, whomp, Strike 2.

About this time I realized I had had too much water to drink at Oddfellows and all I could think about was finding somewhere to use the facilities!  Then all of a sudden out of nowhere all I could think about was the random heartburn that decided to make an appearance and take over my chest. I swear I’ve only had heartburn a few times in my life. The other times being in high school when we used to stop at Burger King for breakfast before FCA. I finally concluded that the BK hash browns were the culprit and stopped eating them. I honestly don’t think I’ve had a case of heartburn since then. So I kinda felt like I might be dying and also about to pee my pants. Not a good combination. Out of desperation I pulled over at a park to use the porta-potty. I marched right up to it psyching  myself up to use it. I opened the door and immediately slammed it back shut. No. Freaking. way. Not gonna happen.

We eventually found ourselves sitting in the parking lot of a Race Trac gas station feeling quite defeated. My mom decided I needed to eat something to cure my heartburn? I don’t think that’s an official remedy, but she grabbed me a lunchable and some water anyway, and grabbed herself a bag of pretzels. We decided since we had driven all the way up there, that we should at least check out the park with the horrendous porta-potty. We sat at the park, ate our snacks and split the tiny chocolate bar that came with my fancy meats and cheeses. It was a beautiful day so we took a walk around the lake and got to catch up on life. You know, even though we didn’t make it to the flea market (which still makes me sad) and the thrift store was closed, and I thought for about 30 minutes that I was too young to die, and the park was littered with Police presence, it turned out to be a great day and a memory that I don’t think either of us will soon forget.

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