Site ColumnsBy Amy
September 29, 2000 - 10:22 AM
I find it hard to believe that the Perth Royal Show has crept up on me so quietly this year. I suppose really it has largely to do with the fact I'm not involved with the show itself for the first time in about three years. The previous two shows I've attended have been in the capacity as a volunteer first-aider with the St. John Ambulance Association of Australia and subsequently found myself doing a lot more walking than one would expect, with the added bonus of carrying a rather bulky radio, first-aid kit and, in some circumstances, an oxy-sock (for the uninitiated, an oxy-sock contains a fibre-glass, C-sized oxygen cylinder as well as various attachments for use in emergencies) that weighs about 5 or six kilos. Occasionaly something would happen - little Johnny would try to jump queue and end up spraining his ankle, or little Molly get friction burns on her backside from the slide, or some stupid teenager eat too much bad food and drink too much soda and then get on a ride and make himself really sick. Or, there were the times Grandpa Joe would get heat stroke or Uncle Sid have a heart-attack, perhaps two of the police-cars doing a stunt exhibition would miss-time their crossing and crash into each other doing 80 KPH, or perhaps a ride would collapse… and one would end up struggling through Side Show alley against the tide of thousands of people, barely able to hear the radio of the din of scores of rides and booths, trying to find the person who'd gotten him or herself into whatever mess they were in, and then trying to work out what was wrong with them
Ahh, those were the days... seven hours of walking carrying said equipment... Yes, I admit, I am insane. But it wasn't without it's perks - you get free entry and can stick around after your shift, you can get into places a lot of other people can't, a free lunch and, if you get friendly enough with the various stall-holders and ride-owners, discount food, showbags and rides.
As a side note - those of you who don't know what a Show is, the best way I can describe it is as a big, old-fashioned State fair. There are rides, bad food, even fairy floss, but there are also demonstrations of things like wood-chopping, sheep-herding, machinery, baking and sewing contests, dog and cat exhibitions... But it's a lot of fun, and that's the main thing.
This is Amy, on a rather dreary Perth Spring day, signing off!
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