The fair came to our town this month, as it does every year. So of course I went up in the ferris wheel with my daughter — the very same Ferris wheel we’ve been riding in for years.
British ferris wheels don’t have all the safety precautions that American ones do, as I discovered when she was three. I remember holding onto her for dear life, trying to keep her from squiggling under the slender bar that was the only barrier between us and the far-away ground.
She’s a much more restful companion now, and I don’t fear for anyone’s life. We laugh and wave our hands and enjoy the view. But there’s still always a moment when the Ferris wheel jerks to a stop, and we swing out at the tippy-top, and my heart skips a beat. The whole world swirls beneath us. I see clear past the houses and the hills to the distant horizon, and I think of these lines from Tuck Everlasting:
“Everything’s a wheel, turning and turning, never stopping. The frogs is part of it, and the bugs, and the fish, and the wood thrush, too. And people. But never the same ones. Always coming in new, always growing and changing, and always moving on. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. That’s the way it is.”
And I give my girl a hug.