|Once again, a photo that has nothing|
what-so-ever to do with this post.
I should preface this story by explaining; the school I attended was a building about the size of a church, a very small church. It was brick, painted white, and filled with a diverse population. It housed students from first grade to twelfth grade. Kindergarten was held in a house about ten miles away from this building.
Every year, in the spring, there was a fun fair put on by someone at the school. I was never sure how it happened or why it happened, but this fair occurred none the less. Now that I am older, wiser, and the parent of four children, I know exactly who put this event on, and why. Because I never heard my mother speak of it, nor seem to be involved in it in anyway, I was unenlightened about the organization of this event.
I only remember attending the fun fair one time. My anticipation was so heightened, I drove my mother, my siblings, my teacher, my classmates, bus driver, and my Sunday school teacher, wild with my endless exuberance.
Finally, the day of the fair arrived. I was dress, ready to go. I stood by the back door a full four hours prior to the appointed time of departure. I was unable to eat my breakfast, unable to make my bed, and announced, I was unable to do anything at all, before we left for the school. I refused to move from the door, just in case my mother should inadvertently forget to take me with. It had happened before. That is all I need to say on the subject.
I was, of course, proven wrong. My mother, informed me, we would not leave until everything was
Walking into the gymnasium, I was amazed. It was transformed. I did not see basketball hoops, or anything other then the delights assembled to entertain us. There was a pinata, which I had only heard about previously, and truth be told, was not positive that was what it was for sure, until I over heard one of the older students say so. There were donuts on strings waiting for children to try to eat them without using their hands. Bozo buckets, apples in wash basins, Bingo tables, clothes pins in bottles to be played and cakes. Many, many cakes.
Cakes. Cakes? I looked for my older sister, as she was the most likely of my siblings to be wiling to explain to me: how could I get a cake? Once I found her, she said " You have to use all of your tickets for the game. It is kind of like musical chairs. When the music stops, if you are on the right number on the floor, you get to choose a cake."
I was stunned. All of my tickets? My mother had expressly said, "this was it, better enjoy it while your tickets last, when the tickets are gone, so are we."
Attending this was pretty much a miracle, money was nonexistent at our house. Actually, if my Aunt Dorothy had not taken pity on us, we would not have been there. I had been sharing with her how wonderful this fair would be, if only we could go. (My mother may or may not have sent me to my room over this.)
After intense thought, I handed all of my tickets over for the cake walk, resembling Lot's wife, just a little, as I glanced over at the Bingo table, pinata game, and donuts hanging on the string, hoping I had not made a big mistake.
The music started. The kid in front of me moved forward, the squares marked on the floor were "told you if you were out" or still in the game or could to choose a cake from the table, depending which one you landed on when the music stopped.
There they were, cakes, delicious confections from other mother's kitchens.
I followed closely behind the child in front of me, with butterflies so large in my chest, I am surprised I did not take flight.
I had my eye on the cake with violet colored flowers. I thought it was beautiful,
not anything like the cakes we had at home. I suspected it may have even been store bought! Wowzier!
Then in a minute, it was over. The music stopped. I stopped. The world stopped.
*Cakewalk (or cake-walk) is a game played at fun fairs. It is similar to a raffle and musical chairs.
Numbered squares are laid out on a path. Tickets are sold to participants, with the number of squares in the path equal to the maximum number of tickets sold. The participants walk around the path in time to music, which plays for a duration and then stops. A number is then called out, and the person standing on the square with that number wins a cake as a prize (hence the name).