One of my favorite weeks of the entire year is fair week. Typically, the weather is cooling down, and we may even receive beneficial rains, which proved true in a big way this year! I have a little rain update toward the end of this post, too.
While my parents were really not fair-goers, I began going with my friends on school days back in the 60s, and I have been attending the fair almost every year since then. These days, I seldom even venture into the area where the rides are, though, as we mostly just enjoy the area where the local food vendors and the exhibits are located. The fair does not charge to get through the gates until after lunchtime, which helps to support the efforts of all of the local food vendors and their respective charities.
I have been taking my elderly mother out to the fair for lunch every year now for a while, and even at 93, she is still able to walk that area on her own with the help of her walker. I am so grateful for her good health and how she recovered so well from her fall back in January, and we had a nice time together at the fair on Monday once again. We sat in “our booth” inside one of the larger restaurants and enjoyed some less-than-healthy food, as I am taking a week-long break of sorts from my diet for the fair and for our upcoming camping trip with friends on Wednesday. Honestly, I enjoy a burger without the bun as much as a traditional burger these days, but we both enjoyed traditional burger and a very few curly fries for lunch.
I have posted several times about my fair experiences in recent years, including the year not long ago when I won two blue ribbons for my photography. I have not entered any photographs since that year either, as it was quite a bit of work to prepare the photographs and get them framed properly.
As always, our main incentive to attend the fair is to partake of the amazing apricot fried pies. They are legendary here, as they are made by members of a local church. Church members make and freeze them over the course of the entire year to have enough to sell during the nine days that the fair is open, and they are cooked on site at the fair. I purchased a few extra pies to take with us on our upcoming RV trip tomorrow, and I will just have to hike a little more this weekend to work off those extra calories, which should not be hard to do at all. I planned this break back in January when I talked myself into starting my diet but only if I had lost at least 30 pounds. I am now close to 40 pounds down, and my blood pressure has dropped 40 points, so I am enjoying a guilt-free week of enjoying a few foods that will once again be off-limits for a while next week.
Our area has recently received some much-needed rainfall from the remnants of Hurricane Odile, and two of our watersheds are up significantly. Lake J. B. Thomas was 1% full and is now 43% full! Lake Alan Henry, which is a significant water source for us, was 53% full and is now up 8.8 feet and is 76% full! There are other reservoirs that desperately need water, but we are so thrilled about the rise in these two lakes, especially Lake Alan Henry. The water gain at Lake Alan Henry over the past week equaled the entire evaporation loss in the worst year of the drought in 2011, which is just absolutely amazing to see. In that year, the lake lost 5.5 billion gallons of water due to evaporation alone, but over the past week, the lake’s storage capacity increased 5.54 billion gallons. The drought continues, but we are ever so thankful for the blessing of ten days of much-needed rain! Many prayers have been answered, and we will continue to pray for more rain and an end to the drought.
It is wonderful to see everything so green again, and we will enjoy our upcoming weeks of fall temperatures and beautiful landscapes until winter finally sets in later on. I absolutely love this time of the year, and we are very excited to be traveling in the RV again this week to one of our favorite camping destinations!