Friday, April 11, 2008

Tulip Festival '08

On Wednesday, the House of Glee took my father to the Tulip Festival as planned. Despite the ever-present predictions of rain, we had sunny skies all day long. There weren't too many tulips in bloom when we went because of the uncharacteristic cold weather we've had, but there were a few fields to admire and snap photos. The cold feeling I got from the festival was not from the weather, but from the various "hands-off" messages. This year, little water-mill was fenced off, as were the outside tulip displays. I can understand that-- there were probably rude people throwing trash into the water. At one of the merchandise spaces, Lucia found some chimes at child-reach, and began to play with them. A vendor came over to her and asked her to stop playing with them. I imagine that hearing the chimes all day irritated the merchants. Even though the festival had only run for a little over a week, I got the general feeling that the merchants were tired of it already. Maybe that was a projection on my part?

Here's an article from one of my local papers on the Tulip Festival: The wait is over: Skagit tulips starting to bloom, by Madeline McKenzie. I think we might be done with the tulip festival for awhile. With both the Tulip Festival and the day-trip to Mount Rainier, I remembered again this week how little I like sitting in a car for any length of time!

The visit with my father was good, though. As a grandfather, his patience with Lucia's questions and demands for stories is far greater than Bede's and mine. Still, Bede managed to think up two stories about tulip root children* on the spot. "This is why I married you," I told him.

*Technically, tulip root children are "bulb babies."


Lone Star Ma said...

That Bede does sound like a keeper.

Sorry the trip wasn't quite what it could be. A clothing shop we pass by when walking about near our favorite weekend brunch spot has a very carefully decorated sign that says "Absolutely No Unattended Children. No Strollers. You Break, You Buy. We Break, We Cry." I am not really opposed to any of these restrictions except for the strollers part (it is too close for strollers, but that makes it too close for wheelchairs, too), but their need to post it so prominently makes me think I don't really need to go there.

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

LSM: There's a sign on a shop I really like that has lots of breakables. The sign says, "This is a difficult shop for children. Please keep them close to you" or something of that ilk. I appreciate it-- it's both honest and diplomatic. I never bring Lucia in, though she would be quite careful.

Lone Star Ma said...

Diplomatic is good. Some places feel more discriminating than diplomatic, it seems, and that always troubles me. I find the sign at the cafe in our local Half-Price Books merely amusing, though. It says Unattended Children Will Be Given Expresso And Chocolate.

Lori said...

I have yet to see a single tulip out here in upstate New York, and our upcoming Lilac Festival may prove to be a lot less lilac-y than in years past if we keep getting 20-degree nights.

I *have* seen many robins, and the actual snowing has stopped, so Spring has to be around the corner, right?

Lori said...

FYI -- that comment from "lori" is me. The comment box won't let me call myself by my given name, "goddess of clarity."


Alkelda the Gleeful said...

"Lori": I know, when I think of you, it's ALWAYS as "The Goddess of Clarity." I can't imagine Mr. Goddess goes by anything else, either.

John & Kelley said...

Several things to respond to in this post: I agree that it's difficult to enjoy an experience fully when you feel restricted in any way. We have a natural human longing to touch and manipulate. As a student I worked at Roosevelt's Little White House in Warm Springs, and while I respected and enforced the no-touch rule to protect the historic items, I often found myself wanting to run my fingers over the beautiful wood of the chairs where FDR sat. Like you, I loathe long car rides! My little ones do so well, but we're all ready to climb the walls if it lasts more than an hour. My 3-year-old's favorite request is "Tell me a story." Though I love writing stories, it's tough for me to pull one out of thin air. I admire Bede's ability too! Finally, there's little more precious than an attentive and patient grandparent! My girls are blessed with several.