Hey, I have a great idea. Let’s take you kid, our teething sixteen-month- old to this thing called Festival of Trees! You’re looking at me all like, what the heck is that? Dude, dude, let me tell you: it’s an “extravaganza of fairyland forests, gingerbread towns and toy train gardens, complemented by over 100 gift boutiques, holiday goodies and activities for kids of all ages.”
I’ll translate: it’s an overcrowded, overstimulating, extremely loud, clusterfuck of decorated trees! GUESS WHAT IT’S ALSO GONNA BE OVERHEATED. We’re all gonna be sweating balls! And because there’s zero personal space, thousands of mouthbreathing people standing in our way, and millions of shiny breakable grabbable objects, sorry kid, we’ll have to strap you down into the stroller the entire time. You’ll freaking love it.
By the time you reach your first breaking point of frustration, your parents will have another great idea — put you on the fast spinning, bobbing, whirling -dervish of a carousel. For real though, you’ll actually dig it, and your smile and giggles will make that one minute worth it. It will be one minute of transformative bliss… and then the ride is over.
It’s time to get off! Yay! You’ll love it so much that you’ll scream like we’re stabbing you as we pry your hands off the horse’s pole. Your hands are the size of walnuts, how is it even possible that you can grip on to something so tight?
Alright, phew, we’re off. And guess what: BACK IN THE STROLLER FOR YOU.
By the time it’s a little overdue your lunch, (and honestly, your nap), we didn’t think ahead or pre-pack your lunch. Instead, we had a better idea: wait in this thirty-minute line for an overpriced grilled cheese. And when we finally get to the top of line, GUESS WHAT: It’s cash only. HAHAHAHAHA.
Welp, guess we’ll just have to walk about this shithole for another twenty minutes looking for the sole hidden-behind-a-curtain ATM. Yes! Actually hidden behind a curtain, wtf. Don’t worry, just because your parents are sort of yelling/talking at each other monotonously doesn’t mean they’re getting divorced. Six dollar surcharge? Sounds good!
Okay! Back in the thirty-minute grilled cheese line, at which point, you will be screaming so hysterically that we’ve gotten to that magical point where strangers stare. So fun. Then your parents have the most brilliant idea yet — there’s no one in the smoothie line. Here kid, have a sugar-laden bomb of strawberry “smoothie” in a faux-tropical plastic cup to keep you quiet for five more minutes. For something that purportedly contains real “fruit,” it’s really a unique shade of GLOWING.
Strangers are staring again. It’s either because you look super adorable chugging down this half-gallon of sugar or they’re judging me.
Meanwhile, mom made it to the top of the grilled cheese line. SHEER JOY COMMENCES. Overpriced grilled cheeses for everyone! Twenty-seven bucks for three sandwiches. We’re rich who cares!
Now we’re all gonna huddle at the end of a communal shaky cafeteria table, silently shove the dry grilled cheese down our throats (well, lol you weren’t silent, but your parents were)…. Aaaand, now…. BACK IN THE STROLLER FOR YOU.
Why? Because we’re going to try for twenty more minutes of vain attempting-to-have-fun-sorta-looking at shit because we can’t admit the day has been a complete, utter failure.
Let’s just go home and never speak of this again. In fact, let’s never leave the house again. I’m totally cool with stacking rings and watching Paw Patrol and keeping you away from pulling the dog FOREVER.