I can't believe this year's fair is already over. I still have corndog catsup stains on all my good shirts, and Dylan is reeling from the shaved-ice sugar implosion that she mainlined every day she went. Grady even joined the fun and had his first corndog ... although that may have been a bit too much for him, considering the two days of diaper-bursting doo-doo we suffered through. He was a brave little cowboy, though, and didn't complain a bit that he had to miss the diaper derby.
Regina and I have our fun, too. Not back-in-the-day, stay out late and sleep in the back of a pickup fun, but, instead, responsible parents of two, home by ten fun. But Dylan, a few inches taller than last year, was privy to an entirely new set of rides, and, consequently, a whole new realm of fun. I'd always thought she was brave, but she really tested her mettle at the carnival. We'd hit the super-slides, then run to the Dizzy Dragons, slow down a bit with a spin on the carousel horses, two more slide trips, grab a big kid for a bone-crushing ride on the Bumper Cars, then hop over to the Dragon Roller-Coaster. She was riding the latter one hot afternoon with her friend Zeppy. I ran to the truck to grab some water and when I returned I noticed the operator had stopped the ride to tell Dylan something. I asked Sean, Zeppy's dad, what was up and he told me that Dylan had been standing on the ride. I cringed. Sure enough, the dragons took off and as soon as the tail hit the corner, Dylan popped up in her seat. She looked like those crazies who stand on the wings of airplanes: forward lean, hair blowing in the wind, eyes squinting.
Zeppy wanted in on the daredevil action, so he tried a barrel-roll on the super-slide. The skreeeeech of skin on hot slide sent shivers down my spine and he wound up with blistered fingers for his cool trick.
Regina and I sing, to Dylan, the only line we know from the late '80s rap song by L'Trimm: "We like the cars, the cars that go boom." It's an awful song, but Dylan likes the line and has fun playing with the lyrics. "I like, I like, the kitties in the room." "I like, I like, the bucks that go boom." And so on. This is mostly irrelevant, except it helps explain Dylan's favorite ride in the carnival. I don't even know the name, we just called it, "The Cars That Go Boom." It was a pretty simple ride: colorful cars going around in a circle, except they had crazy hydraulics that made them bounce like Dr. Dre's Impala.
giant stuffed monkey from the carnie's stash of giant stuffed monkeys, and climbed back in the cars. She buckled in her monkey and took off, talking to the monkey for the entire ride like they were out for a Sunday drive in their hooptie.
After five straight days (with a few two-a-days thrown in), we'd done all we could do at the fair. There were a few rides that Dylan was just a few inches too short for this year, and Grady's belly ought to be corndog-ready by next August, so we have plenty to look forward to. We'll be there, in our shaved-ice stained shirts, riding in the cars, the cars that go boom.