Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The State Fair

I am behind in blogging things I've wanted to blog about and this post is about taking my daughter to the state fair. Every year it arrives in October and it was always a yearly event for us to attend. That is, up until three years ago when a boy was shot ten feet away from us by a gang member.

You wouldn't think in the po-dunk state I live in that there would be gangs, but there are and I don't need to travel to Los Angeles to see the danger they pose. I remember shots being fired and a crowd of people running around like crazy and screaming. Mayhem and chaos ruled the night and I grabbed my daughter and her two cousins and hid in a bathroom. After everything calmed down and police were milling around like ants on an elephant ear, we scurried out of the bathroom and headed straight for the gates to leave. I will never forget seeing the poor twelve year old boy who was shot with a huge amount of blood pooled around his head. It was like he was in a movie and it wasn't real. Unfortunately, it was all too real.

For two years after we did not attend. This year we decided to try again and instead of going at night we went in the daytime. I hoped that it would make a difference. As we walked up to get our tickets we had to pass through a metal detector. The line was long and there was a continuous beeping noise as people walked through. Instead of investigating what was beeping, personnel manning the metal detector waved people through anyway telling them to "move through the line, move through the line". I was in disbelief. If this is the case, why do we even go through them? As I walked through it beeped and I asked a lady working there if she needed to scan me or anything since it beeped. She briskly barked at me to just walk through. I stopped and asked what the point of the detectors were because I could have a gun on me and they wouldn't know the difference and she became very defensive saying that the line was long and people shouldn't wait.

I asked to speak with her manager. My daughter stood behind me completely embarassed. She is of the age where her parents can embarass her by breathing, so I wasn't too concerned. We were passed from manager to manager until finally being directed to the supervisor of the fair. The man was very kind and very concerned about my complaint. He explained that this was the first year the metal detectors were put into place and they had issues to work through with them. He was there the night the boy was shot years ago and he is very mindful about the safety of the fair. He said that he would speak with personnel at the gates and improve the process.

My daughter was ready to leave the office as soon as possible to start having fun and as we thanked the supervisor and walked outside, I stopped for a moment with my beauty and told her that I realized it must have been very boring for her to go through that, but it needed to be done to help protect the safety of everyone at the fair, including us. I explained that if they have metal detectors that they need to use them instead of giving people a false sense of security. During that moment I felt like my Mother complaining about something while I stood by grumpily as a child. I just want my daughter to see that you need to make a stand on certain things in life versus being passive as a snail. I hope it's something she remembers as an adult.

After going through that we walked to get our tickets for rides and such and off we walked through the fair. The camera I brought didn't have much of a charge left, so I took the pictures that I could below.

This is my little girly having fun, finally!

When I see this picture of my daughter I cannot believe how much older she is getting to be! It's just amazing how time flies.

This is a ride that we went on together. It is one of those rides that while you are spinning around like a Tasmanian Devil, it also rocks back and forth even to the point it seems to make an entire circle around. All I can say is that you shouldn't ride this monstrosity if you just drank a barrel of Coke and fries. I felt terribly sick on and off that ride that lasted for at least an hour. My daughter had fun, though, so it was worth it.

While at the fair we always visit the art buildings and also the barnyards full of great animals. There is one attraction they have every year where there are the cutest little baby ducks that are in this contraption with water sliding down the middle and they are up at the top trying to eat from a tray filled with feed over their heads. Sometimes when reaching out too far they slip in the water and slide down the slide. These little ducks were so cute because of the feathers on their head that made them look like they had hats on.

My favorites are the llamas. My battery had to go out right after taking this shot which was sad because I wanted some better pictures of them.

We also check out the local cows.

We rode a few more rides, ate some elephant ears and called it a day. Enjoy the rest of the pictures we took!


Anonymous said...

That was a truly wonderful depiction of what goes on at a state fair.

BRAVA for taking action re. the security problems! You had good reason to do so. Why even HAVE those machines if they're not going to follow through? You did the perfect thing.

la said...

Your daughter is a very, very pretty girl. Did she have her hair lightened before? The darker colour suits her better. And she must never, ever pluck her eyebrows.

The duckling exhibit seems a bit cruel to me. There they are trying to get a bite to eat - nom, nom, oh-oh, splash! They are cute though.

Desert Rat said...

Your Daughter is BEAUTIFUL!

I would have done the same with the metal detector situation, they needed to have empathy for what happened before and why you were questioning, I'd think people would rather wait a little longer in line than be killed.
My son would have gave me that "MOM" look also, but I would have explained the same. You did a great job with the situation!

linda said...

When I was very little there was a movie called State Fair. I loved it so much, still do actually. We have a similar thing - Royal Melbourne Agri Show. It is fun - but a bit commercial these days.

Fortunately we don't have to be checked at the gates at this point in time. That would take the edge of it, in fact I probably would not go again if that were needed.

Your gal is gorgeous.

Immi said...

What a couple of experiences of the State Fair. Good of you to stand up to the false security, though!

Your daughter is beautiful, too.

Laura said...

What a beautiful daughter you have. The pictures were very nice. You did the right thing about the security issue. A metal detector is supposed to be used if it's supposed to provide any level of safety.

Chunks of Reality said...

Cameron - Thank you! I hope that my daughter thinks the same in years to come. LOL

Chunks of Reality said...

La - Thank you for your kind words about my daughter. I think she is rather smashing, myself. LOL

Yes, she had some highlights this past summer which lightened it a bit but she's off having her hair lighter and in fact wants to dye it dark now. We shall see about it.

LOL about her eyebrows. Several people have said that. I took her once to get her brows waxed. Not too much but just where she would feel like something was done about them because she had been complaining about them for awhile because kids at school commented about them. After getting them done she was shocked by the pain and said she didn't want to go through that again. Hopefully she will continue to feel that way. :)

Chunks of Reality said...

Thank you, Desert Rat. I hope next year when we go I won't find the same situation of people beeping as they slide through the metal detector and being barked at to "move along". We shall see. If it's the same I will complain once again.

Chunks of Reality said...

Linda - I know what you mean. The state fair is a family event and if you have to walk through a metal detector to enjoy it, it certainly takes the edges off of the happy event.

Chunks of Reality said...

Thank you, Immi and AD. It's funny because my daughter doesn't realize how pretty she is. I don't want her to be arrogant about it, but I do wish her self-confidence was up a bit more than it is. I do think that it improves with age, though.

Anonymous said...

Your daughter is soooo pretty..... get a shotgun, the boys have got to be coming around already. :)

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