Thursday 09/26/19 Sue and I met up with Steve and Cathy and headed off for opening day of the Deerfield Fair in Deerfield, NH. The fair is New England's oldest family fair.
Though I'm not keen on honky-tonk type of fairs, Sue knew that I'd like this one because there was none of that. And I had a great time. I'm really glad that Steve and Cathy had picked opening day during the week as they said it would be elbow to elbow on the weekend.
Steve, Cathy, and Sue at the front gate. We're ready!
Though there was a fairly long line of cars at the access gate, Steve said that on a 'normal' day, you could wait over an hour to get in. It took us maybe 8 minutes to get from the first of the back up to where we parked near Gate E.
It was a beautiful, warm, early New England Fall day. The drive over had been really nice; some of the leaves were already turning along the road and at the edges of some of the fields. As we walked over to where the old engine display area was, I caught the faint, sweet smell of maple syrup from a nearby barn where they were selling maple cotton candy.
Old wood splitter being demonstrated.
We walked over to where there was a demonstration of an old time log splitter going on. Steve mentioned another demo area just beyond that where they were showing the old method of cutting wooden roofing shingles. I stood around there for quite awhile, amazed at the whole thing. Having a wood shingled barn, I was really impressed with the effort it took to produce those shingles.
Steve and Cathy's son Martin and his wife Emilie and daughter Stella met up with us, and we all walked down the rows and rows of vendor displays. One of the first things we did with them was go over to the pony ride arena. Martin walked beside, balancing Stella as the attendant led them around the sides of the tent covered area. Stella was just beaming, and Martin had to pull her away after the ride was over because she was all set to go around more!
Though early, Steve said if we didn't grab lunch at their favorite stand, that it could be up to an hour's wait in line. He mentioned that place because I had announced almost as soon as we entered the fair that I wanted to be sure I had an Italian sub sandwich. He said this was the absolute best. And it was! All smothered with grilled onions and tasty red peppers, it was just the sort of decadent treat I was looking for.
Near the stand was the horse competition riding area. We took our lunches up into the stands, and watched some of the riders warming their horses up as we ate our lunches. It was pretty warm in the sun, and so we didn't stay there long. We passed by the lunch stand where we had stood in line for maybe 3 minutes, and was amazed that the line now stretched back like a snake for I don't know how far. Certainly if we'd have been in the back section we'd be there a long, long time before we got to the order window.
After more wandering around, Sue and I stopped off at a stand to get what she called 'fair fries'. These are fries with lots of salt and vinegar drizzled over them. Well, they were okay, but truly not any good for you no matter what. And, I could smell them on my clothes for the rest of the day. But I tried them....
While we were doing that, the rest walked ahead to the ox pulling event stadium. Yes, it's true: I watched an ox pulling event. I guess you can't get more country fair than that! So, look, for City Boy it was not only interesting but once I understood what was going on, it was fun, and I enjoyed sitting there and listening to the announcer's commentary as the various teams were guided over to the competition ring, and hooked up.
Yes, it's true: I watched an ox pulling event.
It was also nice to get a break so I could sit for awhile. I haven't been able to do much exercise, or even walking, for the last 8 weeks because of that pneumonia crap that's hung on. Well, I've been able to get out for dinner, shopping, a play — things like that, but nothing extensive. So, walking around the fair for now over 3 hours was beginning to wear me down.
I told Sue that I thought I'd be fine for awhile more as there were some other areas of the fair we hadn't seen. We just took it easy, peeking into many of the display areas and moving slowly through the rows of vendor stands. Sue had ice cream on the brain, and so about 40 minutes later we saw a stand with some tables where I could sit.
Steve and Cathy had wandered off with Martin while we were exploring, and she texted wondering where we were. They met up with us, and we all went into a large crafts oriented building. But my body was starting to really ache, and I was getting more and more tired, with my rough breathing indicating I had pushed just a little too hard.
I told Sue that I'd hit the wall, and so we said our good-bys and headed for the car. Though a pretty ride home, I was really not feeling well at all, and couldn't really enjoy it. Not long after getting home, I told Sue I had to lie down, and when I woke up an hour and a half later, she was lounging in the tub talking on her cell phone with her daughter Jill. And then I slept 10 hours that night. Yup, pushed it just a little too hard.