It is amazing how important a crazy pen, getting a Frisbee on a penguin, and successfully hula hooping becomes when you’re two punch cups and a cotton candy cone in at a neighboring school carnival. There are children runny amok, parents crossing their fingers to take home a child that at the very least resembles the one that they remember bringing there, and the smell of hot dogs that indicates that summer is just a school bell away. The black asphalt is mapped out in hop-scotch and four-square and there’s an odd-squishy, “safety” material surrounding the playground which I do not remember having as a child. Everything from the slide to the monkey bars is painted in primary colors.
Besides the already mentioned hot dogs, there were volunteer mothers feverishly encircling large silver cauldrons with white paper cones as blue and pink sugar dust spun into thread. I was pleasantly surprised by the manners of the children standing in school-taught straight lines and thanking the lovely Glendas before explosively darting off like good little munchkins. There is an unlimited reservoir of red fruit punch and crystal clear water. To cool off with, the whole assortment of Otter Pops were available from the nice lady at the cooler.
In between it all, besides just having the sheer metabolism and bottomless stomachs, the kids go down the rows of home-made carnival games like bean bag Tic-Tac-Toe, Plunko (much like the Price Is Right’s Plinko), the Lollipop Tree (which I still do not understand the point of), football toss, and even a temporary tattoo booth.
As much as I was tempted to partake in the innocent games and could have very well pulled off that I was as young as twelve, I abstained and continued to observe the festivities.
But what’s this? Could it be? Just past the silent auction and the volunteer fire truck? People walking in a circle of chairs? YES! It is! IT IS A CAKE WALK!!!
No, I did not win this precious pink cupcake but I did certainly try…