Express Yourself

About anything and everything on the planet

August 19, 2009

Prince George Exhibition (PGX) 2009 – how I viewed the event!

This past weekend I went to the 97th annual Prince George Exhibition (PGX). I didn’t go last year as I had a newborn to contend with but have always enjoyed taking my older children, now 8 and 10.

Unfortunately, due to the *ahem* cost of just getting through the gates, I decided to sneak away for a few hours with my husband to check things out. After getting over the initial feeling like I was cheating on my kids, we were off to the fair.

Ten minutes and twenty dollars later, there we were – standing just inside the revered gates.

The first order of the day was to get to the famous lemonade stand that I had been raving about to my husband while standing in line. After weaving our way through the throngs of children and bewildered parents, I found it just before the food court. Kyle nearly fell over when the lemonade guy asked for $10.00 for our two large lemonades.

“But honey, they’re made from fresh lemons!”

Fresh lemons! Can you imagine such a thing?

So he wasn’t quite as excited about fresh lemons as I was – for three dollars less he would happily chug lemonade made from powdered sugar crystals…

But I just knew that once he took that first sip, the high cost would dissipate into sheer rhapsody.

I sipped mine, eyes closed, sucking deeply on my large plastic straw, eager for that tangy sweetness to satisfy my thirst.

My eyes flew open as the taste of water with a few chunks of lemon pulp filled my mouth. I looked guiltily at my husband, hoping upon hope that I had just gotten a bad one – a “lemon” of lemonades so to speak.

His face scrunched up with distaste and I could see he was trying not to burst my yellow bubble.

“Hmmm, this tastes kinda watery”, he noticed.

“Yeah, it’s definitely a bit ‘off’ today”, I concurred, “But usually it’s really good…”

We begrudgingly finished our lemonades while walking around the food court looking for something to eat.

Now, I’ll admit, I like attending special events such as these more for the food than anything else, and I was pretty excited to find the Greek food stand that serves up the best souvlaki. I kept rambling on about how good it was and how hard it is to find decent souvlaki now-a-days, meanwhile craning my neck to pinpoint its location. After circling the food court in a vulture-like fashion, I nearly cried when I realized it wasn’t there!

And to add to my bewilderment, there was another lemonade stand at the far corner of the food court! Did I really pick the wrong stand? I wasn’t about to spend another $10.00 to find out.

“Hey, at least they have Chinese food,” said my MSG loving husband. I mean, the guy will eat Chinese food at every opportunity so needless to say the novelty isn’t quite there for me anymore.

“Yay, Chinese food…hey look, they have a Kelly O’Brien’s here!” I tried valiantly to distract him. “Mmm, that Jamaican food looks gooood…”

He acted like he didn’t even hear me and headed for the nearest Chinese food cart.

I’m not trying to sound bitter here, but there were two of them. No Greek food at all but two Chinese food carts and they both looked suspiciously the same to me. Can anyone say food court monopoly?

Now, I know I could have stood in the line-up of my choice, but having skipped breakfast, I was really hungry and besides, we were sharing the same twenty-dollar bill.

So, like the martyr I am, I stood by my man waiting for a number 3 combo plate: chow mein, rice, and sweet & sour chicken balls. He ordered the same and got an egg roll too.

We sat in at the end of a row of chairs facing the amphitheater and listened to a funny family sing a weird song about hot-dogs and another about writing someone’s name in the snow, and ate our food.

“Maybe something’s wrong with my taste buds today, because I can’t even eat the rest of my food”, Kyle complained, “This egg roll is really disgusting”.

I felt the exact same way as we both dumped the rest of our plates in the garbage.

I mumbled something about Greek food, while he muttered under his breath about ten dollar lemon water and off we went to see the animals.

Cute bunnies have a way of making everything better and we meandered through the barns holding hands and petting the animals. The kids in the bunny barn were awesome, in particular one little girl about ten years old who asked us if we “had any questions about bunnies that we needed answering”.  I didn’t know where to start – I had so many burning questions that I couldn’t pick just one so instead I asked if I could pet one. She showed me the “friendliest” rabbit there and let me stick my hands in the cage to touch his soft fur.  She tried to make me hold one but I really didn’t want to get peed on and besides, the thing was shaking like a scared little rabbit.

We took a picture of her with her bunny and went back to look at the chickens. I had no idea there were so many strange looking poultry out there!

I got to pet an amicable horse, a cute and personable donkey (which gave my husband the great idea that we, too, should own a donkey), and almost touched the biggest cow on the block but the business end of her was closest to me so I decided against it.

We even remembered to wash our hands after exiting the barns.

We spent the next hour wandering around the cool novelty shops set up selling everything from inappropriately offensive t-shirts to funky earrings and gypsy skirts.

Most of the jewelry stands were moderately priced but the clothing shops were quite expensive. I don’t really know what I expected, but I can pay $80.00 for a UFC hoodie at a store downtown so thought those prices were a bit much for an already expensive outing. However, I’m not a teenager with too much paycheck and not enough bills to pay, so I kept my remaining $20.00 tucked safely away in my husband’s wallet and left the sweatshirts for someone else.

All in all, there were lots to see, though I couldn’t help feel that the excitement was dimmed somewhat by the lack of hyper children beside me. I’ll be the first to admit I take any chance I can get to escape without the three of them in tow, to be able to relax and enjoy the scenery without someone tugging at my pants or rubbing snot on my shoulder, but I really missed having them there.

However, as a one income family at the moment, it would have cost us $40.00 to get through the gates, $60.00 for the older kids’ armbands, $20.00 for lemonade, $10.00 for cotton candy, and at least $30.00 for lunch.

$160.00 minimum for the five of us spend the day together is, unfortunately, not in the budget, and I know several people that just couldn’t afford it this year.

I know the PGX has to charge at the gate to pay for the special events and entertainment, but it’s unfortunate that only a small percentage of people in this town can even afford to take their families.

I guess we’ll just have to wait until next May to take them to the fair!

Similar Posts:

Post a Comment