I'm going to join the Carnival

 I'm sure many of us have made our way to carnivals as teens. Wanting to try every ride with our friends. Eating all the goodies that you only get from the concessions.  Playing all the games to try and win a cheap stuffed animal that you spent way too much on, knowing you could have bought a better one at half the price.  Throwing up from eating too much and going back on the rides, toting the big teddy bear with you.

Those were fun times and a great part of childhood. You could always make friends with the carnies and get a free ride or a free stuffie.

I became friends with a young girl who was running the tilt-a-whirl. I was 16, she was the same. She left with the carnival because of a bad home situation.  I found out during our conversations that many of the young people at the time were only 16 to 20 years old. Most had the same stories. They said travelling with the carnival from place to place was better than being at home.  They looked after each other, had a place to sleep, food to eat, earned a little money and they were safe.  

I was so busy talking to the girl that I lost track of time.  She had asked me if I want to join up and travel with them. Now that was an idea to ponder.  Sounded fun but I didn't want to live like that. I like my bed, and home cooked meals, and I sure didn't want to leave my parents and pets. 

The carnival was closing and starting to tear it down for the next city, I missed my bus. I called home and talked to my brother about me going to join the circus and leave with them.  He was yelling over the phone. "Be outside the gates in 10 minutes, I am coming to get you!"  

I continued to walk around getting cotton candy, candy apples, etc to bring home.  Suddenly, there is my brother storming towards me, madder than a wet hen.  I asked him what he was doing there, I was going to join the carnival. 

"Like hell you are, move your ass to the car!" 

I slowly followed him while eating a candy apple, he's yelling at me about how I must be nuts and get in the car, NOW!

He was hollering at me during the entire drive .  All I said was, "I missed the bus and needed a ride home! Don't be so bitchy, I even got you a bag of cotton candy."

I went to my room and all I could hear was him telling my parents how out of control I was and had no street smarts.  I disagree, I knew a way to get a ride home safely! I had no intentions of running away to join the carnival. I just needed him to come and pick me up.

I think back to my teen years and realise now that I have a son, I'm being paid back for all the things I did.


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