Monday, September 04, 2006

The crickets are back.

The crickets are back. Well, I suppose they never left. The county fair has been going on for the last 10 days. Each night a concert, tractor pulls, demo derby, loudspeaker cackles, loud music...we're about a mile away as the crow flies but it's been a loud event this year. Its a sign of fall - sure as the schools re-open and the pencils fly off the shelves at staples. Every time I walk out of the house I smell the fair: dough sometimes, but always the strong smell of onions sauteed in animal fat - ummmmmm. I went to the fair on opening day. I'm not much for rides, something about the characters that assemble them 24 hours before the event and then how they "advertise" for help taking everything down at the end of the event $8/hour to take the crap apart.

I generally go and visit the animals - makes me miss being involved with horses. This year there was a "Morgan Sporthorse" on display - I wasn't very good at hiding my contempt. OK, I'm a snob. A sporthorse is a talented equine - one that excels in multiple disciplines and I really don't consider gymkanas to be "sporting" events. Give me a warmblood sporthorse any day - a horse over 16 hands and then we'll talk.

Opening day is the only day you want to go through the poultry building - especially if the fair coincides with warm weather (stink). I love the sheep - I remember my three sheep I had as a child: Inky, Blacky and Snow White...silly names. My mom was pregnant with my brother when we had them - well she had them. I was 6 and got to pat them, she had to clean up sheep poop :-) She was about 8 1/2 months along when she fell face first into a pile of sheep poo, that was the end of the sheep. She gave them to my Uncle (they were living in his barn anyhow) who I presume sold them for meat - I don't remember seeing them again. Yeah, I know - disposable pets what an awful message to teach your kids - I don't even remember missing them, they were there (rescued from meat in the first place) and then they weren't and I had a baby brother and we moved to VT.

Ironic isn't it - folks at the fair wander between the food vendors, the barns and the rides. For the sarcastic it's easy to notice that all of the animals in the barns are represented just 200 yards away in the deep fryers... Bessy on a stick and clucky in Buffalo sauce.

So the crickets are back to being the loudest noisemakers in the neighborhood, the kids (most of them) are already back in school and in another 10 days (give or take a day or two) the first crop of "fair flies" will infest our lovely village. Annual rituals all spelling the end of summer and the beginnings of fall.

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