Tomorrow kicks off the beginning of our town's late summer festival. There will be a carnival, parades, outhouse races, a strawberry shortcake social, library book sale, tours of local historical buildings, outdoor concerts, a demolition derby, an arm wrestling tournament..... I could go on and on. It sounds like fun, doesn't it? I wish it did to me.
Let me share some of my most vivid memories of festivals past.
- About 8 years ago a bus pulled up to the curb along the street that borders our backyard. Six or seven drunk men got out and used our shrubs for a toilet. We had to call the police.
- Seven years ago the birdseed was emptied from my bird feeder and replaced with empty beer bottles.
- Six years ago empty liquor bottles were thrown onto the sidewalk next to our house from a car parked in the street. When I asked them to pick the bottles up and dispose of them elsewhere, they swore and spit out the window at me.
- Five years ago we were sitting in the backyard watching a movie on our outdoor screen when a man wandered in the yard to have a closer look. We wouldn't have minded if he had not been smoking a joint at the time. We asked him to leave and he did.
- Four years ago people parked their cars at the base of our driveway, blocking about half of it.
- Three years ago our flower beds were trampled by people cutting through our yard to attend a party at another house in our neighborhood.
- Two years ago a group of boys chased my son and his girlfriend with chairs and baseball bats because my son got some colored hair spray on one of them (kids around here spray their hair crazy colors for the festival).
- Last year and every year I found trash in our yard.
These are the things I think of when I think of the festival along with deadlocked traffic, parked cars along every inch of our street, loud music and noise until 3:00 am and intoxicated people wandering around the neighborhood. This is a small town and we don't usually have problems like this, but the festival seems to bring in people who like to make trouble.
Call me a party pooper, but I can't wait until it's over.