Well, we survived the Parent & Child Show yesterday, I think. And I say 'I think' because I'm not entirely sure - I'm still waiting to get the feeling back in my right arm after lugging around Guy Smiley all afternoon. 12kg of toddler quickly felt like 20kg worth when it became a wriggling over-excited toddler who wanted to go in the opposite direction at all times.
As the Lily Bug waited with her dad for the Wot Wots to come on stage and hopped about in politely-contained excitement, I ran the Gauntlet of seemingly endless stalls catering for everything a parent and child could ever (and sometimes never) need, in chase of the wayward son who had turned into a whirling dervish. Eye contact with demonstrators was avoided least they try to engage me into feigning interest over their products - I couldn't afford to shift an eyeball from the little boy who was mimicking the crazy flight-path of an inflated untied balloon. Maybe it was bright lights and the bustling throng of people that had him all revved up and in search of adventure. Or maybe it was the "I Love Punk" tee he wore, making him yearn for chaos and anarchy.
Outside for some fresh air, my stress levels were kept in check by the realisation that I wasn't the only one with a cannonball child. Frazzled woman put themselves in time out while their children burnt off some excess energy on inflatable castles. Children squirmed and kicked as their parents tried to gently manhandle them to the parking lot. The surrounding sounds were not so much the laughter of children but
rather the bargaining of mothers, keen to get their children home. "Come
on Sally, I think there's some ice cream at home. You can have it if you'd just stop being a little..." "yes Josh you can have a doughnut, but only if we leave the bouncy castle now..." "right pick yourself up! I'm not carrying you! Stop that crying everyone's staring, we have to go!
Ah, the joys.
End note: I have realised I'm not a fan of mobile farms. The wee calf, goat and lambs
gathered together in an anxious huddle as over-excited toddlers and
preschoolers squeezed and prodded them, made me feel sad. It just seemed wrong for these wee creatures
to be carted into a truck and driven to shows, galas and birthday parties for the entertainment (aka a farm-like experience) of city kids.
In saying that, I allowed the Lily Bug to gently pat the baby
goat and snapped a photo of her doing so. I'm propagating the
exploitation, which makes me a hypocrite... *sigh*
End note 2: J realised it's not always a good idea to attend a tightly packed event while wearing a Warriors jersey. Every three meters, someone wanted to stop and talk about the team. Endearing the first half a dozen times, but after that...