Tuesday, September 4, 2012
I always get a funny feeling around this time of year.
The fair was in town this past weekend, and school started today. The fair used to be a huge deal for me when I was a teenager. I don't think I ever went when I was little; at least I don't remember ever going. High school was a different story though. I live just around the corner from the fairgrounds, and my best friend Suleena and I would go every year. It was a huge deal for us. We took pains with our appearances, as if we were going somewhere fancy rather than just the fair. It was the late 90s, so there was a lot of glitter involved, as you can imagine. Temporary tattoos, too, if I remember correctly.
We would head over as soon as the fair opened at noon, buy our wristbands, and ride the rides all day...but we only liked a handful of rides, so it was the same thing for hours on end. Neither of us minded. I can remember the smell of French fries, cotton candy, candy apples, and various other artery-clogging, sugary confections. Music blasted from huge stereo speakers, and mixed with excited screams to form the soundtrack of the end of summer. Nighttime was always my favourite time to be at the fair - all the little kids had gone home, and I loved seeing all those neon lights flashing like a glow in the dark kaleidoscope. From the top of the ferris wheel, you could see the bay glinting in the distance, and the entire city sprawled below. We would stay until closing and then go back to my place for a sleepover. We were the two musketeers in those days. It was always the two of us, no one else.
I have some really amazing memories of those days. I can't remember the last time I went to the fair. I think Suleena and I went once in college, but I honestly can't remember. After that, she had a daughter of her own, and we didn't go together anymore. There was no one else I wanted to go with, and the price of admission was a deterrent from going and simply wandering around.
Every year now I feel nostalgic when the fair comes to town on Labour Day weekend. It feels like a lifetime ago that I was inside those gates laughing and carefree, trying to forget that school would be starting in a few days. I always had this major anxiety about the first week of school. Now it's been ten years since I graduated from high school - I can't believe it.
Time sure does fly. I'm tired of feeling like it's flying away from me, beyond my control. It's time for change...