I have a fabulous part-time job at a group home for teenage girls. I generally work 2 Saturdays a month and I engage them in meaningful activities such as painting nails, straightening hair, talking about boys, going to the mall, and watching Hannah Montana. Occasionally, if the girls' behavior has been good (which is a gamble) I get to take them on fun outings.
Yesterday I volunteered to work since it was a holiday. (Double pay? Why yes, I'm available.) To my surprise, there was a Six Flags outing scheduled. (Double pay to go to Six Flags? OH YES, I'M AVAILABLE!!)
I have fond memories of going to Six Flags as a kid. In a misguided attempt to keep us out of trouble while they were at work, my parents bought us season passes the summer my older sister started driving. I remember riding those roller coasters over and over, walking around with wet, squishy, blue-tinted socks and shoes from the water rides, and just feeling unbridled elation over the entire experience.
Yesterday, I started the day with the same unbridled elation. It was not quelled by the bickering girls climbing into the van. It was not quelled by the staggering cost of parking and admission (mostly because I did not pay for it). The anticipation continued to build as we raced to the line for our first roller coaster, coaxed the reticent one into the seat next to me, and set off on the fabulous ride.
Sometime in between that first ride and the thirteenth one, the elation had crashed into a throbbing headache. When did riding roller coasters become so painful? And I don't remember thinking about germs as a kid when I peeled my skin off those vinyl seats. Could it possibly have been this hot and humid back then, or is it global warming? And when did people become so rude and stinky and gross? And my feet really hurt!
Needless to say, I'm feeling much older now than I was yesterday morning. How many days do you think it takes to recover from trying to revisit one's youth?
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