Trying Something New
I’ve missed posting like I used to, but it’s been such a whirlwind I haven’t had the time to do that and keep up with plans, friends, and family. As it is, I’m currently in Nashville at my best friend’s apartment where I’m hoping to round out the last of my “family and friends” visits before spending my last week in the states at home.
I just returned from Indiana where I visited some of my family and spent some time at the State Fair, which is probably third in my list of favorite times of the year. The first would be Christmas, and the second is Halloween, if only because that’s my birthday. That being said, I live for the Indiana State Fair, and I could write a book on my experiences there and how I learned how to eat at the fair and what wonders there are to be experienced there.
The only thing I will mention is that if you ever make your way to the Indiana State Fair, which trumps just about every other state fair that’s south of the midwest, you have to be careful. Here are a few of Rae’s tips about avoiding some of the pitfalls of the fair.
1. When entering the animal barns, look down and up.
Normally the obvious thing to do would be to look down and watch your step. After all, pigs, sheep, horses, and cows are herded along the rows and aisles of these barns, and we all know what that means. However, I say to look up because it’s a well known fact that 4H kids are notoriously deviant in their own, good-natured way. They like to use the rafters to hang those Halloween-inspired spiders from strings that they then lower in front of unsuspecting fair-goers. Let’s just say if you’re terrified of spiders (like me) and experience this once, you spend all other years looking down and up at the fair.
2. Deep-fried foods are good, but don’t go overboard!
We know Americans are obese. My mother told me the other day that according to something she heard on the news we (meaning she and I) are now categorized as obese. Very encouraging right before we go to the fair to pig out! That being said, I have a saying regarding the fair: “If you fry it, they will eat it!”
You’ve probably heard of deep-fried Twinkies, deep-fried candy bars, and deep-fried pickles, all of which are delicious. But one of the new specialties at the fair this year was something called deep-fried butter. I don’t know about you, but if we’re deep frying something that’s normally used in deep frying, that’s a little bit of overkill. And considering the heart attack-inducing qualities of plain butter, I have to wonder why more people didn’t keel over at the fair after sampling this new delicacy. Personally, I say stick with some of the standard fair foods, and you’ll be fine.
3. When at the Indy State Fair, ALWAYS visit the Expo Hall.
This is a must. If you don’t do this, you are crazy. Why is that? Because the Expo Hall is like the Holy Grail of incredible offerings for the avid fair shopper. No, I know fairs are supposed to be about the food, the midway rides, the animals, but when they’re selling things like motorcycles, gutters, windows, customized license plates, and license renewals in one place, you have to take notice.
4. Walk around the fairgrounds, but find some place cool to eat.
This is especially important when you go to the fair in 99 degree weather with a heat index of 107, like my family and I did this year. If you don’t go somewhere cool to eat, you’re asking to be sick as a dog, and really, with all the amazing fair foods to sample, that’s quite foolish. So be smart and go to the Pepsi Coliseum where you’re sure to find some cool air.
5. Ride the tram.
It costs $0.75 to ride the tractor-driven trolleys around the fairgrounds once. They stop several places along the way, and you can plan where you want to get off to go to your next location. But ride them because they’re nice on your feet after you’ve been walking all day, they give you a break from the heat, and it’s quite fun just to chill and watch the people walking around.
That said, this was not the only thing I wanted to share in this post.
So I’ve decided on my plan of attack for posting new information about China once I arrive and have all my access cut off. I’m hoping things will work smoothly, but you’ll have to bear with me if they don’t. I decided against making my own website as there’s really no guarantee they won’t block that one, too.
What I have done is got a Posterous account. This website allows you to post to multiple sites at once, but it also sets up a blog and allows you to customize the domain so that you can share your blog with friends. It’s really a good idea because Posterous allows you to email blog posts to the website, and it pulls all the information from the email and transfers it into a blog post for your blog. This includes attachments of pictures and videos, which the site will host for you.
So I’ve made myself a new blog, which you can find here if you’re inclined to go ahead and subscribe. I’ll add the link in to my sidebar links as well, and I think you’ll appreciate the website once you see the name. I’m also going to use Posterous to continue posting at this address as well. However, I’m going to try to maintain some semblance of the original spirit of this blog, so I won’t be posting here as often while I’m gone.
Hopefully I’ll be able to update again before I leave. I wanted to do a post that lists all the books I’ve read lately just to prove I’m still getting in reading time while I’m getting ready for China. So I do hope you’re all doing well, and I look forward to seeing some of you catch up on my new blog when I get it up and running!
Thanks for staying with me so far, and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on everything from books to life adventures to whatever comes your way!