By O’Ceallaigh –
It was always quite the occasion! The midway, the cattle barns, the displays of jams and jellies and baked goods – they always made me hungry! Joey Chitwood would show up every year! We always thought that he was one of the biggest names in racing!
The barker would excite everyone by shouting over the roar of the muffler-less engines, “These cars will come at each other at more than fifty miles per hour – head on – missing each other by less than three feet! Watch this death defying feat!” and the cars would roar by, and, sure enough they’d miss each other by less than three feet! About the same as we do on the highway thousands of times a year driving our own cars – without even thinking twice!
But, who thought about that, then? This was exciting!!
What a trip! We saw The Four Lads and heard them sing “Our Music.” The Four Aces” too! We ate a “Blooming Onion!” I don’t remember if I got sick or not. I probably should have. Then there was the Midway; maybe 4 or 5 times as big as the County Fair. Yes, there were that many more places to take your money!
Now, last week, we were in Texas. Everything’s big in Texas!
Larry, my brother-in-law, and I took a break from the rest of the family and took it in.
What an experience! The Aura! The Ambiance! The demands on the senses! It was a joy to behold.
Larry, young Buck that he is, chose to walk. It was, however, only about half way through the grounds that Larry was saying, “Dan, That little button that says ‘speed’, could you turn that down a little bit!!
I really don’t know what his problem was! I’m 6 years older than he, and I was having no problem at all!!
But, for his sake, I slowed the scooter down to his pace and , so thankful was he that he bought me a Belgian Waffle with about 2 cups of whipped cream and strawberries on top. Then only a short time later, an ice cream cone!
Maybe he just wanted another rest!!
Big Tex is a tall fiberglass Texan who has stood there for many years, greeting the fair-goers with his big deep voice enhanced electronically, and with his hands, head and arms moving in a welcoming motion!
“Welcome! To the Texas State Fair!”
Bob White has a picture of his grandfather in a sling, hanging from a crane doing his part in installing the original Big Tex back in the 1930’s. Maybe he’ll let me use a copy of that picture here, do you suppose? Sho’ ’nuff!
Larry and I had such a good time at the Texas State Fair that day. It was a day that we will remember and cherish!
Before we left, we stopped in a gift shop with multiple outlets, especially one with wood carved bowls, vases, boats, birds, airplanes and all sorts of other things. These wood carvings looked like fine pottery so perfectly were they formed.
I saw a carving of the SR-71 “Blackbird” that I would like to have had. But, alas, what would I have done with it. And, I was reminded, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures on Earth…”
Larry bought Joanie, his wife, a beautiful 10 inch egg to match a vase that he bought for her there on a previous visit. She was thrilled!
It is, however, somewhat melancholic for it was the last gift he was able to purchase for her.
Joanie passed to her rest on October 10, 2015, just a few days later.
She will be missed by a large and loving family.
She was 68.