In Utah, they had this beautiful Lavender Festival on a farm that grew acres and acres of lavender. I bought a bunch I cut myself, my husband and I ate lavender ice cream, we listened to cowboy poetry, and we watched a jostling tournament with real horses and armor, among many other fun things. It was the best festival I’ve ever been to.
One thing I was particularly excited about was the Fairy Tea Party. My mom used to tell me stories about fairies. We had fairy tea parties all the time and we left tiny treats outside for them in my toy tea set. Having a fairy tea party at a festival sounded like the coolest thing ever.
There was limited seating and we had to buy tickets in advance. I stood in an enormous line for a good twenty minutes – that’s how badly I wanted to go – while my husband watched kids jumping on an inflatable jungle gym.
(The stakes came loose from the gym in a strong wind and the whole thing went flying. The kids dangled from it as they clung for dear life and parents chased after it screaming. Since no one got hurt, it was really funny.)
When I finally got to the ticket booth, the lady told me I bought the very last ticket. There were maybe fifteen people behind me. Suckers, I thought. I tried not to grin at them as I handed her the money.
The lady bent over a binder with a pen and said, “What’s your little one’s name?”
I didn’t answer at first. “Um… what?” I stammered.
“Your child. The one that’s going to the tea party.”
Ah, I thought. That makes sense.
“Well, I… I thought…” I wasn’t sure how to back out of this one, so I told the truth. “I was planning on going."
She looked up from her book and we stared at each other for a long moment.
“This is for kids,” she said.
“Right," I nodded. "Gotcha.”
She tapped her pen on the table and said, “I guess you can stop by, but just the kids are getting cookies and drinks. There won’t be any seats for you.”
“Oh. Thanks.” I walked away with my face burning.