Sunday, August 15, 2010

I get to check something off my bucket list!

The 2010 Iowa State Fair is running August 12-22. Liv and I have gone twice, while Andrew was with us just the second time.

Anyway, there is something on my Bucket List that I could only accomplish at the Iowa State Fair. And yesterday, Liv and I did it!  Check out #36 - "Take Livie on the big slide at the Iowa State Fair."

When Andrew, Livie, and I went to the Fair yesterday afternoon, we'd wandered around taking in all the sights, eating a bit of junk food, seeing the horses (Belgians, Quarter Horses, and Miniature horses, to be specific) and even getting Livie's photo taken with Clifford the Big Red Dog!!

Well, in the back of my mind, I was thinking about my bucket list. I knew that there was an item on there that I could only accomplish at the Iowa State Fair . . . the big slide. I knew it was high up, and that I'd done it once a long time ago, but doing it with Livie was a bit different.

First, I wasn't sure if she'd be up for it. Sure, she'd say "Yes! I wanna do it!" But when it came down to climbing all the way up the steps to the very top (something like a couple stories high), I wasn't sure if she'd actually go through with it.

Second . . . while I'd be a little nervous going that high up on my own, I knew it would be a different story if I had Livie with me. My first concern is always to keep her safe. I knew I'd be worried that she'd be too close to the railing as we climbed the steps to the top. And I wondered about riding the burlap mat with her in my lap, and if I'd be able to hold her next to me all the way down without her sliding away from me.

I really wanted to do it, so I kept it in mind as we walked around the Fair. Then while we were in the horse barns, we looked out a doorway and guess what we saw? THE BIG SLIDE!!

I told Andrew, "Look! We could go do that!" He gave me a wary look.

At this point, Livie was ready to go do something super exciting, so I asked her, "Do you want to go on the big slide? It's as big as a building!"

She said, "Let's go do it!"

So off we went.

Andrew was worried, and said he'd rather *I* take her on it and he'd wait at the bottom, keeping an eye on the BOB (the running stroller). I told him I'd do it if he bought us our tickets.

After he got our tickets, Livie and I went hand-in-hand over to the bottom of the steps. I grabbed a big burlap mat, gave the guy our tickets, and up we climbed.

And we climbed. And climbed. And climbed. My heart started beating a little harder. I felt a clammy sweat on my upper lip. I wondered if it was because I was getting some cardio, and also because it was so hot and humid. I knew, though, that it was because I was getting nervous the higher we climbed.

Livie held my right hand and with her free hand, held the railing on her other side. At some point as we got higher, she let go of the railing and got really close to me. We were definitely high up.

I kept talking, saying stuff like, "Okay, we'll get there soon. We're almost at the top. Keep holding my hand til we get up there." It was more for my sake, though, to keep myself from getting too nervous.

Then we were at the top.

We walked to the far side and the guy at the top put our mat down for us and held it in place by putting his foot on one corner. Then I got down onto the mat as he held Livie's hand. He helped her get down on the mat in front of me, I put an arm around her and he said, "Okay, off you go!" At this point, I pushed off with my other arm.

Down we went! My heart raced with excitement. I smiled at the thrill of speeding down this huge yellow and green slide. I yelled "Woo hoo!! . . . Yee haw!" all the way down. I heard Livie's laughter. It felt like we caught some air as we went over the bumps. We sped down faster than I thought we would. We raced along fast. And before we knew it, we were at the bottom, being slowed down by the carpet at the end.

And that was it! It was fast and fun. Livie and I got up. She had a HUGE smile on her face. It was a blast! I quoted Diego from the "Ice Age" movies and said, "Who's up for round two?!"

Livie told me how much fun it was and asked if we could go again; I promised we'd go again a different day because there was now a big line at the ticket stand.

I then asked if Andrew had gotten a photo of us. No, we'd gone down too fast, and he got nothing but the slide and the guy at the bottom of the stairs.

But we did it, and I can check off #36 on my bucket list.

Now we can look forward to doing it one more time at the 2010 Iowa State Fair!

Here's the photo Andrew took. The fence post is in the way.

Here's the photo I took of the big slide so you can see how big it is.
It's taller than the horse barn with the tall roof!

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