My memories at amusement parks are never polite or welcoming. I never revisit them unless the topic is mentioned. They are advertised as the dream of a young child which seems to have suited some but instead I am forced to think of sticky skin and clenched hands on fast rides.
In my preteens, one of my best friends scraped her toe on the gravel in the hot summer sun. The joy of water parks is supposed to be the ability to wear flip-flops and expose bare feet. As a result, we saw her large fleshy toe bleed out- red. Her skin opened like the cover of a book, we would tell her repeatedly as though it was our favorite song.
Humming it in her ear.
Wave pools—two images assert themselves. A middle school field trip that led to a game of sharks, minos, and waving naked pubescent breasts. Bikini tops tend not to fit properly in the growing stages and with the force of water it was bound to happen to someone. My group of girlfriends were struggling to stay afloat as giggles bursted from our guts and through our mouths. Poor Emily was so confused. She kept asking, “What’s so funny?”, as we all tried to alert her of the mishap while battling our clenched bellies. I still wonder how she didn’t feel any air or why the lifeguard stared infinite moments longer than was appropriate before blowing his whistle. Perve. The next image is fat bodies waddling on the surface of the water on top of floats. In a wave pool they are just as intimidating as whales. No offense to the larger variety.
Ah, and of course the decline. The moment of holding your heart on your tongue as you wail to the heavens.