I’ve been to the Sydney Royal Easter Show more times than I can count – it’s never really changes, but canvassing the fresh food dome for free samples and watching the six bar equestrian show-jumping never got old. The jam packed show bag pavilion was not quite as exciting as I got older, when the opportunity cost of eating an entire bag of chocolate became a consideration, but somehow – maybe because it was only around one month a year – it never quite completely lost its novelty (like how almost everyone I know in LA has been to Disneyland at least 5 times). But really I was there to pet every conceivable species of animal they had there – and I inevitably dragged whoever was there with me through animal pavilion after animal pavilion, getting ridiculously excited about dogs, horses, lambs, rabbits, alpacas…
It’s my second year living in LA and i’d never been to the LA County Fair – so when my girl friend Angie mentioned that we should go, I jumped at the chance to do something new. The fair runs from September the 1st through the 24th each year in Pomona, 40 min to 2 hours east of LA (depending on how many accidents/slow-downs there are on the freeway there).
I think my love for carousels came from my 8 year old love for real horses – back when I hadn’t yet convinced my parents that getting on the back of a real horse was not the most life-endangering thing a young girl could do – a carousel was the closest I could get to my childhood dream.
This girl here could not believe that we called cotton candy “fairy floss” in Australia. So imagine her face when we saw the unicorn fairy floss sign. Naturally, we HAD to get some. (I’d definitely texted her the night before with something along the lines of ‘we ARE DEFINITELY getting pink fairy floss if it’s the ONLY thing I do there’. We don’t have to mention that hahaha…) We never quite verified the glow-in-the-dark claim, and yes, melt-in-your-mouth pink sugar never ceases to make me happy no matter how old I get.
While there weren’t any alpacas, or any animals for that matter, I did manage to cuddle some giant rainbow teddy bears, despite my negligible arcade game skills (though for Aussies, if you played netball in high school and were GS or GA, than those rigged backboards for the free throws shouldn’t be an issue).
For the first time in a while, I found a sense of childlike happiness and giddy excitement that I have neglected to seek out on a regular enough basis this first year and a half in LA. I’d just come from an audition, through the afternoon rush-hour traffic, but night time at the fairground is always a magical, and the sights and sounds soon became a hazy blur of sugar and neon lights.
I feel like one night a year eating copious fairy floss and overpriced/oversized pizza, and flagrantly disobeying the seatbelt signs on Ferris wheels is always warranted. Angie definitely told her boyfriend we risked her life on the Ferris wheel. For the record, it was not nearly as terrifying as her (excellent) dramatic storytelling. I rest my case. All’s fair in carousels and cotton candy. ❤
Photography: Richard Munoz