Never wear good jewellery to the Royal Easter Show!
Come to think of it...why did I even bother to wear anything nice or make an effort with appearance when all that really counts on a day of parental torture and extortion is comfortable shoes and a fat wallet!
Its not like anyone else is dressed up....and if i didnt wear last year's bonus - beautiful big hooped 18 carat gold earrings, BOTh of them would still be snuggled safely in my jewellery box!
Nor is it a place to make an impression on a strong handsome farmer despite trying to smell like a farm sheila by stepping into a blob of warm cow poop at the Jersey Judging ring in a pair of high-heeled sandals! We toured all the animal husbandry halls, patted one-week old piglets and great big Limosin stud bulls, milked a cow or two and and even tried on a few Driz-a-bone oilskins - but not a single handsome farmer in sight! (Lots of short scrawny fellas with missing teeth and friendly smiles though....but while I still have teeth, I want a man with teeth!)
Come to think of it....the people at shows and places like that are often the most outrageous thing you see or remember! Every shape of the human form is represented. There is something quite universal about such attractions that seem to draw the same kind of crowd no matter where you are. Except for Disneyland, I have never in my life seen as many daggy people together (an just where DO all those ridiculously oversized bright stuffed animals end up?)
Mind you, EuroDisney in Paris was no better. That book "Why French women don't get fat" was all based on lies and clever marketing-the author clearly moves only between the 1st and thhe 15th arondissement of Paris, because on the outskirts and in suburbia, French housewives are no more slim and chic than the rest of the world's over-worked, under-pampered mothers! Vive la mama!
So, next year, if I fail to escape my annual fate as Showbags carrier and walking ATM, I will leave the glitz and glamour safely in the drawers at home and simply don a tracksuit and sneakers, along with a cushionfor those long waits while the kids get their adrenal glands pumping on the rollercoaster rides!
But its not all torture. The bus ride back home after the evening show in the arena is BLISS!
And...as I look back on our first show 7 years ago, pushing a pram with one hand and holding onto a wild and fearless toddler with the other, juggling nappy bags and bottles and marvelling at the excellent infrastructure at Sydney's Olympic Park for the needs of mothers with babies, and I look at how well-behaved and accepting of the words "no" and "Enough" those same two little people were today....it gives me a sense of having achieved SOMETHING!
Parenting can sometimes feel like a job that's never done...and it isn't....but its nice to be able to find some evidence occassionally that all your invested energy does not just evaporate into the ether.