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When I was 26, I worked for an American waterski team as a professional waterskier. The company owns waterski shows based all over the world, and I was lucky enough to be sent to an amusement park in Germany.  However, it didn't turn out the way I had expected.  Allegra wondered why I even wanted to come back to the park, since all she had heard were bad things about waterskiing but good things about my german friends. I was both excited and apprehensive. 

1987 had been a pivotal year for me in my life - not all of it good.  But that's another story.

In the parking lot, we could hear shrieks coming from an enormous ...


roller coaster.  We made our way in that direction. The kids were really happy to have a break from museums and galleries.  They had been looking forward to this for a while.  It was a hot day but not a holiday for the germans, so there were no line-ups anywhere.  Allegra got soaked on the first flume ride and went back with John to get changed, while Birch and I rode the loop-de-loop roller coaster.  Once was enough for me.  Between that and twice on the Hellavator, my voice was hoarse from screaming.  

We went from ride to ride, and at 1:00 p.m., found our seats at the waterski show.  All kinds of fun experiences came back to me.  It is as if, up until today, I could only remember the bad parts.  Now I was telling the kids and John better stories.  I was having so much fun with the four of us.  The waterski show was so close to the same show I had performed in 25 years ago, even some of the same music, that I was transported back to that time in a really good way.  

Afterwards, we talked with the skiers in the show.  They took us backstage to the old office and I looked for my name on the old waterskis nailed to the wall.  None of the skiers had even been born when I worked here.  One of them learned to ski near the same lake that I did back in Ontario, and we had seen him in a ski show two years previously at our cottage.  They seemed as excited to talk to me as I was to them, and my bad feelings became history.  It was very therapeutic!  

As well, my kids started looking at me with new eyes.  They really admired the skiers in the show, and perhaps for a few minutes, they could see that I had had an interesting life before they arrived on the planet.  John and I sat in the sun with local brew for him and local wine for me - after all, we are on the Weinstrasse!  

We finished the day in Neustadt, looking for the Elwetridchers from the forests - an old legend from that area.  We drove again to Hassloch where I had lived to try and find the one good friend I had left behind.  No luck. Too bad we didn't have Facebook in those days - maybe we wouldn't have lost touch.  I had one more lead from the internet, and so we made plans to head to Mainz the next day on the off-chance that I would get to see my friend. Allegra and I tumbled into a pretty room with white duvets, while Birch and John roughed it in Hotel Diahatsu in the rain, everyone sleeping where they want to sleep, happy and content.   

-Carolyn
7/28/2016 07:23:22 am

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