Yesterday, for most of the afternoon and part of the evening, I took my kids down to the Fair/Carnival that had stopped in town for the weekend.
Rides, games, and food were available for the youngsters to enjoy.
They didn't have any of the food, because after working in a restaurant for so many years, I'm not letting my child get food that was prepared by a dirty carny in a place that may or may not have passed it's last health inspection.
They didn't win any of the games, because carnival games are all rigged pieces of crap that try to get you to shell out tons of cash for a trinket that is made for pennies in some Chinese sweatshop.
And then there were the rides. The kids got more fun out of the obstacle course playgym area, the mini roller coaster, and the haunted house (in June?) than anything else.
But then it hit me.
I don't let them play the games they'll waste money on, or eat the food that I don't trust, but yet its perfectly okay to put them on a ride that was trucked in and assembled by a guy who likes working for the Carnival because "There's no rules on the road." That certainly instilled a lot of confidence.
I hope he follows the rules when he's putting that roller coaster together.
I realize how foolish it is that I'm trusting the safety of my children to a guy who's main talent appears to be spitting and rolling his shirt sleeve up higher anytime he sees a pretty girl.
Add the total time it takes to disinfectant the kids afterwards, (there were some seriously unclean people hanging out there.) and it almost seems like a hindrance more than anything else.
But then I saw their smiles.
Despite all my reservations/bias, they had a great time - and can't wait to do it again.
That makes it all worth it.