Monday, September 05, 2022

A frigid fourth taste of Fair

Well, maybe not frigid, but definitely cooler; hurray!

When I headed to the State Fair to be a spinning demonstrator Sunday afternoon, I dressed for the warm summer weather in a loose linen sleeveless top and skinny jeans. But the Creative Living exhibition hall is well air-conditioned and quickly had me wishing I'd brought another layer to don. A fellow demonstrator had just finished carding pounds of lovely alpaca/bunny batts that sure looked inviting, but only Coco got to cuddle in them – and he was already warmly dressed!

Previous dreams of one last Oregon Dairy Women milkshake were abandoned; instead on a break I bought (and quickly gobbled without a photo) a cherry hand-pie from Willamette Valley Pie Company. I also took a quick spin around the building again. Do the baking competitions bother anyone else?

All that time, effort, and expense mostly wasted; obviously my frugal immigrant roots run too close to the surface. I'd rather enjoy or bestow the fruits of my labor, not brag about the ribbon they won!

By the time my shift ended at 7:00 p.m. I was dreaming of walking out into a warm evening, but to my surprise a cool breeze was blowing – and the fairgrounds were packed with people enjoying the nice weather and last weekend of the Fair. I did a quick tour through another favorite exhibit, photography, calligraphy, and fine art,

this artwork caught my eye
a scenic and serene scene in the midst of it all

then threaded my way through the crowds to meet Rick at the Horse Show Stadium to catch the 6-up draft class. Three teams competed by weaving through closely-spaced cones and backing into an imaginary dock, then swinging the horses 90° both directions to demonstrate how these 18-wheelers of days gone by would have let traffic pass. The Percherons left one cone standing; the Clydesdales (actually, four Clydes and two Percherons) left three cones standing; only our friend and client driving his mostly homebred Shires left all cones standing to win the class. The final photo shows him taking the judge along for his victory lap.

After the class, Rick and I threaded our way back through the crowds so I could get my annual Fair treat of falafel – messy but delicious!

I'm not sure if I'll go along with Rick for his last walk-through as the livestock and equine exhibitors leave tonight or not. You'll just have to check back to see if there is a final taste of Fair!

That's it for now from . . .


Mama Pea said...

You have such a large, interesting fair. That falafel looks dee-licious! What was the white cream sauce and seasoning, please. I used to make them quite often with a mix sold at our local Co-op but stopped when somebody (!) changed the mix to one we didn't care for.

Michelle said...

Yes, we do have a great fair even in it's diminished state, Mama Pea. I missed several things this year – the dock diving, the orchid society display and sales booth, and all the fowl and rabbits (because of disease concerns). Hopefully those things will come back. As for the sauce, it tastes like traditional tzatziki sauce.

Leigh said...

You have a fantastic fair! What I'd call a real fair. Our county fair has devolved to a carnival with a rock concert and petting zoo. We don't even bother to go anymore.

People of all sorts seem to have a competitive streak, which is why I think they're willing to enter the judging categories. People love bragging rights! I suspect there's quite a bit of friendly rivalry amongst neighbors and kin too. That said, like you, I wouldn't enter any of the cooking contests either.

Tim B. Inman said...

Everything at the fair is wonderful! Of course, nearly everything at the fair is in excess, too. I'd say the baking is no more wasteful than those horses and their gear; it all goes to show what we can do and how excellently we can do it if we try. The rewards of discipline and hard work and dedication each and all. I'd chalk it all up to education and inspiration! I'm inspired more to try baking a cake than riding a horse, but to each his/her own! Beautiful pics. I missed the Iowa State Fair this year; maybe next year.... Cheers

Tim B. Inman said...

Sorry to double post, but just after I hit the trigger, I was reminded of my wife's love of the 'Iowa Necessary Test.' She always enjoyed a good laugh remembering that her mother would frequently ask, "Is this really necessary?" Iowans are a frugal bunch...your roots may be showing.

A :-) said...

I like falafel! And I'll bet it was fun to watch the teams of giant horses do their thing :-)

Michelle said...
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Michelle said...

Those were posts about our State Fair, Leigh, but we do have a 'real' county fair, too. I can be very competitive, but as for bragging, I guess that was as frowned upon as wastefulness in my upbringing.

Horses are for riding and driving (and could be considered historical reenactments); food is for EATING. How's that for a rationale, Tim? And yes, I also tend to be very frugal. 😉

Handling a six-horse hitch is a rare and dying skill, A. It's pretty awe-inspiring to watch it done well!