Sometimes we go the the Columbia County Fair!

When the kids were little, the “Always Over Labor Day” Columbia County Fair made up for the fact that summer was done and we’d be heading back to NYC to work and school. Each year we did the same thing: Ate baked potatoes in the 4H tent, watched a tractor pull, cheered at the pig races (one pig invariably named Kevin Bacon), and strolled up and down the midway. Howard would throw a couple of balls at something and win something small, which was then whisked from his hand as the barker promised that $5 more would ensure a bigger and better prize. This was before the days of fried Kool Aid and batter-fried pickle slices. But there was pizza and funnel cakes and fudge. The animals were interesting. We had fun. A couple of years ago the kids (now adults) went with their respective significant others. On Sunday, however, we joined them–our first fair in over 15 years. Howard used to say that it was like they stuck a vacuum cleaner in your pocket and sucked up all your cash. Still true. Entrance for six was $72! That didn’t count the fried pickles or roasted artichoke hearts (yum) or the turkey dinner Howard got, or the chocolate milk shake, nor Raph’s and Lauren’s spin on the ferris wheel ($5 a ticket). There we were, two way-grown-up parents and their young adult children having a fantastic time at the ever-so-tacky but wonderfully entertaining county fair. This year’s theme: Be a Kid Again. I guess we were. We talked about it after–an event in our lives. Moral of the day: it’s pretty easy to relax and have a good time with your adult kids. We saw hundreds and hundreds of people we didn’t know having fun as well. We also saw gorgeous quilts, the cutest lambs, pigs, ducks, bunny rabbits (including one that looked like a fox), and goats. This time around, no one watched the pig races. We did, however, buy three flavors of fudge.