Tuesday, July 29, 2008

T'was a Fairly Fair Fair

We went to the county fair today. What fun! The Boyo saw many animals not usually seen by us 'city kids' and was completely charming. He introduced himself to many of the other fair goers, as well as quite a few of the animals.

Little Sweet Pea did a fine job of napping, although the braying of a small burro woke her with a start.

We travelled from building to building admiring the works of others, be it animal, mineral, or vegetable. And I wondered how much 'The Fair' has changed in the past hundred years, if at all.

Oh, there are a few more Ipods around these days. Back then I suppose almost everyone looked Amish. Today I saw a teen girl wearing a green t-shirt, blue shorts and cowboy boots. Made me giggle.

My mother's family was ensconced in that world. My grandpa, whom we called Opa, and his girls (wife and four daughters) raised Herefords. They did the Fair for forty years, winning enough ribbons and trophies to fill a room. My aunt even made a quilt from the ribbons, and a pillow to match, and still had dozens left over. I remember as a youngish boy of seven or nine, going to the fair, 'helping' with the cattle (which I'm pretty sure was odd jobs that were safe for city kids and kept us out of the way) and dreaming about raising Herefords in our back yard.

I remember too, napping in the hay, leaning against a cow that was also sleeping. Who gets to do that but country kids?

Now, knowing that the raising of a prize heifer is out of the question at our current residence, I mentioned to The Wife that I should very much like to enter something in the fair next year. I make a pretty good Sweet Pepper Jelly (this year's Grand Champion Jelly was a Wild Plum variety). Although my pepper crop is poo this year. But, after the 'Great Thistle Incident' I am giving serious thought to making a wild thistle jelly for entry next year!

I can also enter photographs, a stained glass piece, and maybe even a pocketknife or two. Who knows? I might even score a ribbon!

The Wife pointed out, quite correctly, that I have about a jillion ribbons (and a couple of trophies) from my aunt who passed away last year. And I could very easily adopt one of those. But I told her that the old Marine in me still believes that unless it is earned, it's just not the same. She, of course, knows me a little better than I know myself, and agreed. She also stated that I seem to have this strange drive to 'leave a mark' on the world.

Again, she is correct. One of the reasons I fell in love with her is that she was always a willing audience for my stories. I have always liked to be 'on stage', 'in the spotlight', whatever. And I live for recognition. It's why I blog instead of journal. This is open for anyone to enter my world for a while. (thanks again for visiting by the by) I do want someting of myself to remain a little while after my death (which is not, I hope, imminent by any stretch)

I'll never be the President. Nor will I assassinate a President. So I doubt the world will remember me by my title or by all three of my names. I'll never be famous, never have a monument erected to me unless I do it myself (which I might) so all I can do is do what I can! And if I can add one more ribbon to the collection... Well, it will have my name on it. Sometimes that's all it takes.

Rambling on tonight. Slew of night shifts coming up, and I'm trying to get turned around to survive them.

More Later


steph said...

I actually thought about you when we went to our two county fairs this summer - I told Julio I could see you entering in all the events except possibly the larger animals (though I wouldn't put it past you to rent a barn space or some such thing!)

If you make a pepper "comeback" you should sell it at some farmers markets (after sharing with your family first, of course!)

Love you!

Sharon said...

Sounds like a Fun Fair Day! I can't help but think we who read your blogs could get even more hooked should you include pictures such as "Boyo and the colt"... that's a prize-winner for sure! ...talk about leaving your mark on the world...