Reflections: Scenes from the County Fair

by awindram

She was not the budding gardener her granddad wanted her to be, but that still did not stop him submitting an entry form in her name for the Floriculture competition at the County Fair. The theme she was given by the fair was “Island Tropics”. “Do not try for a literal interpretation of the theme title,” her granddad read from the rules the fair had mailed her. “Use each title as a springboard for imaginative creativity.” She asked her granddad what that meant. He told her that it meant she should let her imagination run wild.

On the opening day of the fair she packed all that she needed (four Barbies, several sheets of colored paper, Scotch tape, and various potted plants) into a shoe box and with her granddad drove to the fair. She and the other children competing in the under-eleven category were given an hour to set up their gardens. Needing to drop off the dahlias, roses, and chrysanthemums that he was entering, her granddad left her to get on with it.

Away from her granddad she let her imagination run wild. One Barbie, she decided, would float dead in the pool. Another would lie crushed underneath a palm tree. It was called, she told the judges, “Murder at the Beach.”

She came in second place winning $35.