I love fairs. Ever since I was a bite-sized runt, I remember going to them. I’m pretty sure it’s the norm for anyone who lives in the Granite State. Up here when late August rolls around, you don’t sit back and let this traditional occasion pass as quickly as the foliage. You get out there and experience the agriculture, rides, livestock, and strange food. Natalie and I visited two fairs in the last few weeks: first the Hopkinton fair, followed by the Rochester fair. Stick around, maybe you’ll see something weird. I guarantee you’ll enjoy the smashing end.
After seeing goats and sheep and stopping for Italian sausage, (one of the many, many things I like to eat at fairs) Natalie saw a sign advertising hot sauce and jerky. We strolled up to the AfterBurn tent. This is where the story I like to call “The Showdown at the Hot Sauce Corral” begins.
Natalie and I walk up to the booth and she asks the man, “What’s the hottest thing you’ve got?” The man says, “That would be the Four X.” Natalie then asks for a sample and the man gives her a plastic spoon. Most people would put a small drop on the spoon to test it since, you know, it’s called the Four X. Nope, not Natalie. She put on as much as the spoon would hold. Her face didn’t turn red or break out in a sweat after she tried it. Noticing Natalie’s reaction, or lack of, the man got the attention of a group teens nearby: “Hey, this girl just ate the Four X like it was nothing.” The group looked at Natalie like she was a myth, and I pictured her in a spaghetti western. All of a sudden, Natalie transformed into this drifter, Eastwood-type, and I felt that the teens needed physical proof of her cast-iron stomach, so I said, ” Do it again.” Natalie continued to lick her sample spoon.
The Rochester fair lasts a week, which is awesome since fairs in New Hampshire are usually only three to five days. Below is a glimpse of the festivities including the pig race we attended. Piglets and pot-bellied pigs with names like Shaquille O’ Squeal and Notorious P.I.G. raced for the gold as we cheered amongst the crowd. Our pigs won.
Looking back, I ate a good amount of food at the Rochester fair: nachos, a corn-dog, a small piece of Natalie’s giant pretzel, and cheese fries in a dog bowl. The only thing I regret is not having a fried Twinkie or Oreo. Fried sweets don’t come around everyday, you know.
And as promised… the carnage-filled ending: The School Bus Demolition Derby!