Tuesday, September 8

quite agricultural

We did the royal show yesterday. It wasnt too bad. I was going to do a bumper of a post with some fab pics ... i remembered the camera...but the batteries were flat! What an idiot. All i could squeeze out of it was these plates of award winning eggs. Couldnt even get a pic of the boybeans first 'barnyard' experience, comprised mainly of a chubby pointed finger poked up many wet domesticated nostrils.

I used to love going the Sydney Royal Easter Agricultural show every year when i was a kid, it was my once a year chance to get some junk food. Not lunch, we always took our own sandwiches but the heart stopping excitement of the 'show bag'. I would spend ages deliberating which ones to buy, but invariably came home with the same two every year. The Darrel Lea bag- to satisfy my chocolate needs and the Sunny Boy bag to satisfy my iceblock and chip cravings for the year. I loved coming home and spreading my loot around and admiring my sugar bounty, replete with the monos and saturateds that would have to do me until the following year.

The show piece i used to wait for with great anticipation was the fruit, veg and grain display. A huge mural made entirely of produce. In hindsight, Im not sure just how big it really was ( my childhood street and home are not as grand as my memories suggested either). It was usually a rural scene made from seasonal produce. I loved it. When i moved to SA, I was pretty peeved to find the Adelaide show didnt have such an agricultural centrepiece or a super dooper giant slide that you rode on an old hessian sack.

My favourite two things about the show here are the cattle sheds and the public entries for 'best of'. Love em. The cattle I love not because Im enamoured with cattle, beautiful though the specimens on show are , but i just really love the microcosm of home that the moleskin wearing, akubra sporting cattle families construct within these sheds to house themselves comfortably for the duration of the event. 1950's formica tables and odd chairs, worn plush couches, rugs, mugs, toasters, side dressers full with crockery, cups and the odd kambrook electric fryer, commercial size tins of instant coffee and bowls of fruit on doileys all in a 2x2m space and all nestled amonst the farting, chewing, defecating and peeing cattle. Its just brilliant.

The 'best ofs', well they speak for themselves. Where else do you get a space provided to get serious about the difference between an egg, and ginger sponge, a florentine and a fruit cake (the biggest entry field i have noticed, obviously a VERY serious and hotly contested item)? I love how by the end of a week the custards' hardened, the berries mouldy, the choux pastry has sunk and the jams have stained. There's always a fly or two in the cabinet but the goods inside still proudly sport id cards, some with ribbons, all for our viewing and not tasting pleasure. The kids always run happily around in chase of their most favourite piece, the most amazing creation, the 'oh my god can you believe a 12 year old made that' moment. Thats what i love about the show, the creativity and connection with making and growing stuff that it affords and the celebration of human endeavours. Watching your child emerge breathless and bright eyed and grinning from an exhiliarating, thrilling ride is kinda special too!


Katy said...

How brilliant - I used to love the show - the Mr not so keen so I thought this year we might compramise and go to a country show - I think Yankalilla has one? I remember Sunny Boys! When they were 20c at school.

Jen said...

So much better to have the kids emmerge 'breathless and bright eyed' from the display halls than the showbag pavilion! I remember the agonising decision about WHICH showbag (we were only allowed 1 each!) ANd I loved the art emtries, and looking at all the primary school kids' work and thinking how AMAZING it was!

Jacqui said...

I can't tell you how many times I read something here that is like seeing my thoughts on screen! In this case, memories. Ah...the Royal Easter Show and the show bags! It was the same with us - we got one or two each and I remember clearly the The Darrel Lea bag and the Sunny Boy bag and spreading it out on the bed...ah fun. I loved the big produce mural and I'm here to tell you it is as big as you remember 'cause M. and I have taken to going every other year and they still do it! My favourite part is the art and craft entries. We often say that things made in our house "wouldn't win first prize at the Easter Show" but after looking at those eggs, and looking at ours, I reckon they might! I remember the shock of seeing a real pig when I was 12 - it was nothing like Charlotte - it was HUGE. Ah fun. The word verification is 'likel'. Yep. I like.

Laura Jane said...

Ah, the Show.

We took our kids most years, and enjoyed similar aspects, and the SHow Bag guide was required reading for 2 weeks prior.

They each had a price limit on Show bags and would sort themselves out and plan where to get each one, and the route around the showgrounds would be guided by that.

We live near the showgrounds here in Perth, so the show is a big deal in our neighbourhood, but the kiuds are getting abit old now, and will take themselves if they want to go.

But I love the produce...and am considering going this year, for the first time in 2-3 years.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

The Sunny boy bag and the Twisties or Smith's Chips bags were always my pick. All that sugar junk, so little time! :)

Kelly said...

katy- ahh the sunny boy bag *sigh* such simple p[leasures! A country show sounds like a great idea, thanks for the reminder!

jen- haha, they do that too! but only allowed 2.

jacqui- nice when that happens hey? and YIPPEE!! my memories are intact. Thanks for that!

laurajane- the newspaper insert has been replace by online lists! and endless hours on the phone with friends discussing! i do love the [roduce and the creative stuff htere too. Reminds me of our humanity.

NQN- hi. yes, yes yes!!! I used to start anticpatingthe haul days before hand. Kid Bliss