Arriving at the fair, the wheel stood above everything else. Eventually I found myself at the base looking up into the early night sky contrasting the unknown future with the present.
Watching, as I often do, the youthful couples in line for the ride, I could see the shyness, uncertainty and awkwardness of first attempts...stepping out of mom and dad's umbrella into the world of others.
I was 16 again. Just received my drivers license and the freedom of stepping out on my own. There was the smell that grass releases when stepped on by so many feet in the town square. The first nip of Autumn in the air. The nervousness and fear of being turned down. The first of many times in my life where stepping out my "zone" meant taking the chance that I would be rejected...a skill that is only learned by trial and error. Sometimes you win...sometimes you loose. The youth in line had taken that risk and you could see the relief in their faces...she/he will go with me on the ride! Arriving at the end of the ramp, they stepped into the pod...a sanctuary that for a few brief moments gave the excuse to steal a hug or hand clasp under the auspices of helping to lessen the fear of the ride.
The ride was much more than a "ride"...it was the portal to a brave new world.
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