Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The State Fair of Texas...

is the biggest state fair, I believe. I was talking to some of the teachers I teach a learning community with about the fun of taking the students to the fair, and one of them got very gung ho about the idea. We talked to the students about it, and they said they wanted to go, so we did a kind of last minute field trip to the fair last Tuesday. (Tuesday, because with a can of Dr. Pepper, admission is only $3.) Since my dad was in town, I got him to bring the kids over and pick me up from work, and we met up with my students next to Big Tex. I told the Leila and Ali to look for a giant. (I was trying to get them to move quickly as we were a little late to meet the students.) Once we found him, Ali was fascinated. Throughout the day he talked about him and asked to go back to "The Giant." (Leila was translating for him as I couldn't figure out what he was talking about.) The students and I touched base, and then we all split up. Three of the students decided to hang out with us for a while. I wanted to do some kid stuff, so we headed to the petting zoo area. It took us so long to get over there that we missed a show I wanted to see, but then we found the farm. Ann, one of the students, and I walked the kids through as they watered a peach tree and picked a peach, milked a cow, fed the chickens and gathered eggs, planted and harvested vegetables, drove a tractor, and fed a sheep who gave them wool. At the end of the farm they "sold" their goods and got a coupon with which to buy healthy snacks from the store. Meanwhile, my dad and two of the students were standing outside. My dad had started explaining the finer points of cattle and chickens to them- (One year of agricultural school and a lifetime of interest). They, however, weren't so interested, and abandoned us when we headed down to see "Birds of the World." In an attempt to create some unity on the field trip, I had told all the students that we would be at the 2:30 Bird show. Unfortunately, it was on the other side of the fair, so we dashed over there. The show was great, but we didn't see any students. My kids managed to eat up all of their healthy snacks from the store. Then we headed back to where we'd been before since we hadn't yet looked at the animals. On the way back we decided to do the Log Ride. It was great. Leila was in the front, and then Ali, and then me, holding on to him. We rode along calmly, and then started moving up the "hill" for the big drop at the top. I had to let go of Ali on the way up so that I could hold on to the rails, but I grabbed him when we got to the top, which was a good thing since the log didn't stop, but immediately dropped to the bottom. Leila found that scary, but overall we enjoyed the ride.
Luckily admission was cheap, because we spent lots of money on food tickets. The kids ate icecream, I split a deep fried latte with my dad, we ate twister fries, the kids shared a frozen lemonade from Ann, and my dad and I finished off with some delicous root beer. The State Fair is known for frying things- this year it was deep fried cookie dough, guacamole, latte, and coke. (There's more, but I cannot fathom deep frying all these things.) The deep fried latte was really some deep fried cookie things topped with coffee icecream and whipped cream. It was good, but not worth the hype.
When we got home that evening I could barely move!

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