Monday, 2 September 2013

The Bucks County Show. It's not suitable for Grandparents!


As we were entering the car park my Aunt exclaimed, “Oh we should have brought your Grandma!” This was a bit strange, as the rough terrain didn’t particularly spring to mind as suitable for an eighty-something year old.   I looked up ahead however and noticed a disabled sign and I realised exactly what my Aunt had been thinking.  My Grandma was not wanted for her wit, charm or physical dexterity (ahem) but rather for her bright blue disabled badge.  Never mind we thought as trudged from the far end of the field dubbing as a car park to the entrance tent.  We’ll walk if we have too.  At least it’s not raining. 

The County Show is a fun affair.  Not to be too stereotypical, but for the men there is a beer tent and for the women there are shops (and lots of them).  For me the show is pretty much the same every year.  I wander round pleading with my family to me buy jodhpurs (we don’t have a horse), new wellies (I don’t remember the last time I wore wellies and I’m pretty certain my feet unfortunately stopped growing when I was 14) and a dog (well who can resist those puppy eyes looking up at you).  Once I’ve finished with the shopping and a spot o’ lunch I find the animals (luckily the ones not for sale) and watch a few shows.

The first show I saw was the ‘sheep show’.  Essentially a Kiwi man spends half an hour making innuendos about sheep. “Don’t take a picture know, it’s not a good angle”, he says as he mounts a sheep (to be sheared of course, he wasn’t just mounting… you get it).  His jokes sometimes made you cringe, “ladies I’ll pay you 50p if you let me give you a Brazilian [wax]”, but he certainly made a show that really only involved clapping when you saw a sheep, a lot more entertaining. 

The other show I saw was of the Royal Signals White Helmets.  I knew very little about them before I was dragged away from the shops. I thought I was in for some old people parading around on old motorbikes.  I was much mistaken though as the White Helmets are members of the army who spend three or four years training to do stunt driving.  Apparently ‘the team performs spectacular feats of balance, death defying cross over rides and outstanding acrobatics’ according to the Army website.  In other words they have some fun on motorbikes and they occasionally look a bit wobbly whilst the commentator reminded us that “they could die” doing these stunts.  It was actually a lot better than I had anticipated and I would definitely recommend you go and see them next year.

The most notable thing about the show however were the conversations I overheard.  Apart from the usual “But Darling we must spend £100,000 on a tractor and no it doesn’t matter that a) I don’t know how to drive one and b) I don’t have a field” from the middle-class Bucks parents.  There was a brilliant conversation between two mothers, “Doreen, where’s Doreen? Has anyone seen Doreen?” and an equally great remark from a mother saying, “I haven’t heard about many lost children over the Tannoy this year.  It only seems to be lost grandparents!”

It seems we made the right decision in not bringing my Grandma.  The Bucks County Show is a highly enjoyable event but perhaps next year leave the Grandparents at home (even if they get in cheaper) or maybe keep hold of their hand and let the kids run wild and free instead.

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