There was bluegrass and jumping dogs, farm equipment and cows, and a lot of food to eat before climbing on large machines designed to make a person lose their breakfast, lunch and dinner of fried dough, turkey legs and root beer floats. It was also ninety-something degrees with humidity high enough to make water sweat.
Welcome to the Dutchess County Fair.
The heat index made it impossible to do the fair in one go, which was good for the various fire-departments of Dutchess County who set up donation blockades on the roads to catch us all coming and going. How can you not give to a fire department? Anyway, the first trip to the fair--the afternoon attack-- was geared mostly towards wandering the exhibits and (for me) trying to explain to the Culligan-water display woman why I wasn't really interested in the filtering system ("No problem if you're renting--you can take the system with you when you move!" "Uhm, I have to go over there now."). Chris, Raina and Blaine loaded up on soup mixes and hot sauces and I busied myself with sampling the dips.
When we left the afternoon excursion, we asked the lady at the gate if she would remember us when we came back if our arm stamps washed off in the pool, shower and ice-bath we all had to take before coming back for the evening run. "No," she said without hesitating and she was right. I guess Chris scrubbed too hard because he had to pay again.
The evening was all about food and fair-rides. And we were doing pretty well until that one ride that looked like a hang-glider but felt like bending your knees on a rock while being thrown at the top of a truck. Figures that that's the one I was most excited about. Better to trust Chris and go where he leads--it's like he has an extra-sensory ability to locate fun and guide you there like a bloodhound.
We stuck it out to the bitter end--sweating and giggly--and managed to find the bar on the way out where all the carnies collect to swap the day's war stories. Round midnight, the fat ladies were singing and it sounded a lot like, "God Bless America."