Trevor needed one last corny dog, and I thought Banner might like to see the Chinese lanterns. So we packed up the car on Saturday after naptime, and headed to Fair Park.
Apparently, we weren't the only ones eager to enjoy one last fair day. The park was super packed, and the VIP lot that I normally park in was way over capacity. Luckily, I had made friends with the parking attendant, and she told me about a "secret spot". To everyone else, it looked like a cedar tree. But in reality, it was just big enough for a car. You just had to trust the attendant and drive into the branches to the left with faith that your front bumper wasn't about to meet a tree trunk or anything solid.
And in case you are curious: my car didn't even get scratched. I did, however, manage to get bits of cedar tree in my underwear. I don't even pretend to understand how that was possible.
The weather on Saturday was absolutely beautiful. The sun was bright and warm, but it was still cool enough to warrant a sweatshirt or light jacket - especially in the shade. It almost felt like fall.
Having seen most of the Midway with the Vogts and Drinkwines a couple of weeks before, Trevor and I decided to visit a less frequented part of the park this time around. I had been hearing about how good the tamales and beer were over at Texas Discovery Gardens since the fair began, so we made a beeline over in that direction to check it out. With admission to the gardens, you got access to not only the butterfly house, but a snake exhibit and a variety of not-fried yumminess and local brew on tap. It was a little pricey, but what about a trip to the fair isn't?
Banner and I split one vegan and one shredded chicken tamale, while Trevor had a chicken pesto wrap. Very yum.
After dinner, we took Banner out on the grounds to run around. It was nice to have a break from the fair crowds for a bit. He hissed at the snakes, tromped through the gardens and marveled at the fountains of "wa-wa". He even enjoyed the butterfly house (although many of the butterflies had gone "night-night" by the time we finally got in there).
The best part, from Banner's perspective at least, was the fact that he got a sticker. Granted, it was just an admissions sticker, but the little tyke has be OBSESSED with "stick-as" for awhile now. His favorite part was sticking and unsticking said sticker. It never got old. He had it on his nose for at least five minutes. The kid cracks me up. He is a sticker maniac. He accidentally dropped it at one point and was all, "stick-a, stick-a....NOOOOooooo!"
It is nice he found something he liked, because - otherwise - Banner does not seem to be a big fan of the State Fair. He won't eat any of the fried food, and just stares at the throngs of people, noises and attractions.
Don't believe me? Here is a recap of photos from the 2013 State Fair.
Banner's reaction to his first ride:
The spinning bears:
The automobile show:
And, finally, having his picture made with the new Big Tex:
|Banner is not amused by the State Fair of Texas.|
Sigh. Maybe next year.
Although, to be honest, I'm not sure how I feel about Big Tex 2.0. I only heard him speak ONCE, and he was doing an advertisement for mattresses in the Centennial Building. It didn't seem right. Whatever happened to "Howdy, Folks"?
Also, has Big Tex always been neck-less?
Once it got dark, we headed to the lagoon to see Chinese lantern exhibit. We went LAST YEAR but the exhibit was completely redone for this fall. It is definitely a sight to behold. Banner LOVED roaring at the dragons.
|Made entirely of porcelain.|
I also think he would have enjoyed watching the acrobats, but people are a$$hats sometimes. We arrived early and sat on the grass. But when the performance began, these people came out of nowhere and stood right in front of us. No one could see behind them, and there was much muttering about "some people" around us. I was tempted to say something or ask them to sit down, but more and more people followed their lead and walked up to stand next to them. I guess since they arrived late, they figured blocking the view for 2/3rds of the audience was completely appropriate and justified.
It was going on 8 PM, though, and Banner was rubbing his eyes. We cut our losses and headed back out on the grounds.
After a stop at Fletcher's for that last Bird Dog (which Trevor and I split), we swung by the Embarcadero to take a gander at this year's butter sculpture.
Much like the new Big Tex, I don't know how I felt about it. Part of me was like, "Awww, Big Tex" and the other was like, "Huh. Well, that's a little creepy".
After that, it was back to the car. Both Trevor and I assumed liberating the Envoy from the cedar tree would be complicated (especially since we had been partially parked in by a white pickup), but we were out of there in no time. And Banner? He was passed out before he drove out of the gate.
It was good afternoon.
Until next year!