Monday, September 10, 2007

my weekend

Well this was Harvest Festival weekend - which is sort of a big deal in a "farming" town - not that we are much of a farming town anymore - really more of a suburb of Denver, and most folks in town haven't ever mucked out a stall or chopped wood or gotten up early to feed critters but none the less we hang on to a few of our 'farming' roots - including the harvest festival. Well our Harvest festival is very much about the booths and the food and the carnival - there is also a parade on Saturday morning, and all the girl/boy scouts and marching bands and politicians and 4-H kids and classic car clubs turn out to show their stuff. After the parade there is usually a duck race down the creek (pronounced crik) where gold was first discovered in our town. You buy a duck from the Rotary for $5 (I think you can get 5 for $20?) and the money supports their scholarship fund. After hundreds, I mean hundreds of rubber ducks have been sold they dump them all in the bucket of a bulldozer - for those who know - the bucket on a regular sized bulldozer is darn big, so there are really a lot of ducks, they nearly fill the bucket. They dump the ducks into the creek and we all run down the banks of the creek watching the little ducks go - they get caught up in eddies and branches and behind rocks and they run over each other and around each other and it is so fun to watch them go down the creek - and of course the numbers are on the bottom so you have no idea at all which one is yours. They go down the creek for about 1/2 mile and then the Rotary has this wonderful thing some clever person built that catches ALL (okay one or two slip by, but nearly all) the ducks and it catches the first eight or ten in single file (it's shaped kinda like a Y as wide as the creek and then the leg of the Y holds ducks single file) - and of course that is how the winner is determined. We have never won - we don't care - duck race is absolutely the most fun of the day. So - The oldest had to work - well she was supposed to work at night, but a girl actually asked her to trade shifts for the morning shift which she gladly took (for reasons I will explain later), and the boy had a football game, so he and husband went to football - because I was not about to miss the duck race for a football game my boy was NOT playing in. So youngest and I packed up a cooler with some drinks, grabbed the Jelly, some hats, some cash and took off for the Duck Race. No Freakin Duck Race - I drove around the creek three times looking to see if they moved it up or down stream - no race - I'm so disappointed and well pissed off - I'm going to the next Rotary meeting to raise a stink actually! So then we went "downtown" - you know 3 blocks from the creek - and found a parking space and headed for the "catholic" school gymnasium. Why no one actually calls it by it's name is sort of beyond me, even the good little catholic girls that my daughter played softball with that attend school there don't call it by it's name - anyhow, it's the perfect location based on the rest of the events for them to hold the "food fair". Yes a real true old-fashioned food fair (hence the aforementioned 'jelly'). You can enter Garden vegetables that are abnormally large or weird looking - or on the other side of the gym (small town, small school, small gym, it's not so far to the other side) there is the canned fruit, canned veggies, pickles, salsa, jelly, jam, cake, pie, cookies, yeast bread, quick bread contests. My daughter entered her elderberry jelly. Well actually youngest and I took it in, because oldest was at work - but she had gladly changed shifts because prizes are awarded at 2:30 - and she would get off at 2:30 instead of starting her shift at 2:30 so she could possibly be there in time to get her prize. There were 7 jars of jelly in the jelly category - and she won 3rd place!! Now for anyone who actually knows what elderberries are - you are probably thinking ewwwwwwwww elderberry jelly? For anyone who actually knows what elderberry jelly is, you are probably thinking "holy crap that's way too much work". It is wonderful jelly, really delicious and wonderful. But the nature of elderberries makes it two to three times as much work as other varieties of jelly - for a bunch of crazy reasons. So that she won third place tells me that the judges actually knew that it is a bitch to get it to set and not turn to rubber, it's really really difficult - way more than other jellies. I'm a jam person myself, I have no patience for that dripping bag and that skimming the foam crap - let me cook up a big old pot of fruit and sugar and ladle it into jars any day - much much easier. Well then, after all that - we went on home had some supper - got back together as a family and went back for the carnival (much more fun at night you know) and it's all about being seen and seeing others anyhow. Amazingly - first year in ages - all three of our kids stayed with us. In part because we had the $$ (but they know we would have handed them some and let them run off if they asked), and in part because in spite of inviting lots of friends (most of their friends do NOT live in our town because they don't go to school in our town) none of them had a friend come with them. So, my eldest, she really doesn't like carnivals, and she was missing her boyfriend, and she had worked early so she was tired - she really only went for the funnel cake - and she almost has no friends from our town anymore, and certainly none that would go to the festival - though she isn't - they are all emo/punk and way too cool for something like that. Son has played almost all of his sports in the next town over or for school, so except for one year that he played sports in our town and a few friends left from elementary school (which also isn't in our town, but had a few more kids from our town than the high school) he doesn't have a lot of town friends either. Now youngest, played softball in our town (eldest did too, but quit so long ago it's hard to remember), dances in our town, for some reason has a lot more elementary school friends from our town and actually has some high school friends from our town... so she was sure she would just run into friends -- no go. But the boy ran into about 20 friends - and never once wanted to take off with them - he stayed with us. And he was delightful to his sisters - and they were delightful to him. It was so much fun - none of us rode any rides, but we shot at targets (I did pretty well but didn't win), and the boy and the youngest tried to break beer bottles with baseballs - the boy won that and all the little kids standing around were saying "wow, he should be a pitcher" -- tee hee, he is a pitcher. And then we had our funnel cake, listened to a little of the rock band in the park and went home - it was sort of a quiet night at the fair? Damn that funnel cake was good though!

Sunday is boring so nevermind - this isn't "my weekend" it's my saturday.

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