Going to the fair

Here Maybelle was at her very first fair in 2009.

You'll notice that at this fair, she was actually eating funnel cakes, which she refused to do today. She is now rejecting the food of her people.

As for 2010:
Elephants are quite distressing
This picture captures much of what last year's fair was like for her: vaguely terrifying. Livestock? Terrifying. Elephants? Terrifying. Rides like the merry go round? Definitively terrifying.

Today we went to the 2011 Coastal Carolina Fair. We returned to our previous Charleston tradition and went to the fair with Claire, Adam, and Nina. It was a great day!

Yep, Maybelle is terrified of livestock
You can see from this picture that Maybelle was still terrified of all things animal, but the this year the terror wasn't as lasting.  It did make us wonder, though:  is Maybelle such an urban baby that the lights and sounds of the midway don't frighten her, but the quiet organic experience of being around animals does?

Because Adam, Nina, and Claire were there, Biffle and I both got to go on some adult rides.  This is the first roller coaster I've been on in years, and it was such fun!  I'm glad I warned Nina ahead of time that I'm a screamer, because boy, was I.

But perhaps the most exciting part was that this year, Maybelle was an enthusiastic rider on two rides:  the bumblebee, and the dinosaur.  She didn't like waiting in lines, but as soon as the ride started moving, Biffle said she knew what was going on, and she was having a good time.
Today really felt like an adventure. I personally love love love the fair:  I love the chaos, all the different smells and sights, the weird mix of people, the rides, and most of all, the food.  This is why Maybelle has gone to the fair three times in the three years that she's been alive. It was great to see her enjoy today. While the livestock were a bit much for her, she loved looking at various flags waving, she pointed out the helicopter every time it went by, and she jumped on every metal frame covering the wiring in the midway.  She and Biffle watched rides going up! and down!  And then she had fun on the rides. As we were walking back to our car, Biffle said to Maybelle, "We rode on the bumblebee!", and she added, "Dinosaur!"

I wondered if it would be tricky to have two groups with such different agendas and paces.  Maybelle's pace was, let's just say, leisurely.  But it worked out beautifully.  We split into different groups a couple of different times, and then reunited for animal observations, food, and watching Maybelle on her first successful ride.  And Biffle rightly noted that part of the reason the day was such fun is that Adam and Nina are incredibly easy to be around.  Rest assured that not every soon-to-be-eleven-year-old is as eager to hang out with Maybelle--to hold her hand, to talk with her, to walk slowly because she's walking slowly--as Adam and Nina.  They were great.
Alison, Adam, and Nina waiting for the roller coaster


claire said...

And we had a fabulous time -- now it is officially fall!

Rairy said...

Maybelle is in good company - I also do not like livestock.

A wariness for things that can easily kill you is a good idea. Oh and chickens are creepy.

Anonymous said...

I could live at a fair. We go to the state fair every year and I LOVE rides but my hubby turns green. I'm trying to get kayli to be my partner but she's still cautious!