Remember that time I told you that we were going insane and taking four kids to an amusement park? We did that. You know what? It went very well. I was introduced to a new part of the park I didn’t know existed. It is South of all the rides my wife and I patroned just five years before. It’s called Tiny Town. It is full of tiny rides, tiny trains, and tiny tree houses. And, let’s not forget the Tiny Gem Mine. I don’t know the legal ramifications of using your park guest’s children as a work force, but it’s there, so things must be legitimate? Our oldest was really the only one who qualified for any of the rides. The others were more entertained with the sites and sounds going on around them.
The Tiny Toot “roller coaster” is far from a roller coaster. It is a strange tourture device as far as I can tell. I rode with her every time she rode. Mostly because she requested it but also because she needed an adult to ride with her. I got to know all the parents that were in line for the Tiny Toot. We were the only one’s in line for the Tiny Toot over, and over, and over. It is driven along the track by a devious device for five twenty second rounds to get all the thrills of riding in a circle. My daughter would raise her hands and scream at the top of her lungs as if she were on the wildest coaster in the world. My job was to prevent her from shattering her ribs. The Tiny Toot train stops. By stops I mean slams to a halt with no warning. I noticed before we rode it for the first time that kids under the age of 30 would fly into the safety bar. This is a flaw. So my job was to make sure this didn’t happen. I was very good at my job. I wasn’t thrilled in a way that a crazy coaster would thrill me. But, I had the best time.
I also chased her around in the overly complex Tiny Tree House upon her request. I hit my head quite a few times. Some little kids learned some new phrases that I hope they never repeat. Once we figured out how to get out of the Tiny Tree House, she ran right back in. Again, fun.
The twins discovered the best thing in the world. A carousel. They seemed to be amazed that they could ride horses, horses that went up and down. The amount of smile pasted on their faces cannot be described with the human vernacular. I would have to travel to another planet and get a word from an alien dictionary to describe it. Endless is a good jumping off point. The only problem for them with the carousel? It would stop after two minutes. This was unacceptable! Even though the ride was never full, the attendant made us get off and walk around to get back into line. The twins found this annoying. They managed the annoyance by flopping wildly in our arms until they could get back on their horses. Once they got back on said horses, all was good with life. I lost count of how many times we rode the carousel. I would guess somewhere in the neighborhood of lots.
What did I learn from riding in a circle so many times I am now the mayor of circleville? Plastic horses on pistons are the best thing ever to a one year old. Don’t tell anyone… I was having just as much fun as they were!
There was one thing my wife and I wanted to do. Long before we had kids, we went to the old time photo stand. She was a saucy bar maid and I was a very smooth card player. The photo hangs in our hallway near our room. We thought it would be fun to have her point at the four kids and me at the same time. I, of course, would be shocked in the photo. Obviously they were not my kids. I am a card player. A very good one. If I am so good at cards I am obviously good at not impregnating saucy bar maids right? RIGHT? The picture did not happen because the wait was very long, but we hope to get one made at some point.
Oh..Wait a second!
We spend most of the day at the park, and it wasn’t until we were driving away that I remembered the rides that were destined to thrill me. Oops? I don’t really mind, the trip was not for me. The person(s) it was for were thrilled. This signals a dynamic shift that is happeing in my life. Yes, I still enjoy my own world of video games, but the main focus of fun has now been shifted to the kids. We are working hard to create an environment where they are stimulated and can expand their minds. Seeing the world being discoverd through them is truly an amazing thing.
I would like to thank my parents for coming along and providing extra hands to help with the kids. But truth be told, Grandma and Grandpa seemed to be having just as a good time as the kids.