October 8, 2006

Dispatches from the very good goat department

Our trip to the Topsfield Fair began inauspiciously, with bad traffic at the Topsfield exit.

The traffic jam did give us an opportunity to sing along loudly, and embarrassingly, to my friend’s newly purchased Simon & Garfunkel Live in NY CD. There’s a wonderful moment in the middle of the show where Simon (or Garfunkel?) commends the civic-mindedness of “the guys selling loose joints” because they planned to donate half their proceeds to the city. Drug dealers these days have no sense of social responsibility.

In any case, after an hour of excruciating inching, we were informed that the fair parking lots were full and we would have to catch the shuttle from the satellite parking lot. I managed not to ask the nice policeman why the hell no one thought to tell people that before they spent an hour sitting unnecessarily in traffic. Ergh. Things didn’t improve much once we hit the satellite parking lot.


If I ever wondered how much I love fried foods and rubber frog-catapulting games, the answer is “an extremely unhealthy amount" because a full hour later, we were squeezed onto a school bus and dropped at the fairgrounds. And then things improved immeasurably. There were lights...


And rides...


And snacks...


There was a Latino dude playing the traditional Peruvian folk tune “(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love with You” on the pan pipes.

And, of course, there was this sign...


And this...


There were chicks hatching, which was really very cool until I noticed two of the chicks were having a rough time. One just lay there with a leg awkwardly twisted up and over its chest, racked by really painful-looking seizures. Another misshapen runty one kept trying, and failing, to stand. A little kid asked his distressed-looking mother if the runty chick was “going to make it” and in a stricken voice she told him “I don’t think so.”

It’s so wonderful when children can be exposed to the miracle of life – and the inevitability of suffering and death - at such a very young age.

I also saw real live sheep for the first time since I started knitting. Sheep are soooo much more exciting when you’re a knitter. They’re yarn, with legs.


I even managed to accomplish some hat knitting…


Many thanks to my fabulous friend Megan for driving and being such excellent (and patient) company.

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