19 September 2011

I'll Just Watch

The first time I went water skiing was also my last.  I remember trying a few times, falling into the water and my mom, a seasoned skier, giving me some advice.

"Try leaning back a little so you don't get pulled forward."

Being a trusting daughter, I complied.  Grandpa started the engine, I got halfway out of the water and threw my weight back.  I got a swimsuit wedgie so sever that the thought of it still makes me clench my rump in pain.

All was not lost.  I learned a few things from that experience: 1).  Even parents can be wrong and 2).  I decided skiing was not my forte.  Maybe someday I'll give it another try but for now, I'll just watch.

Cedar Rapids is chalked full of free, family-friendly entertainment of which we happily took advantage.  I might not be able to even get myself onto two broad skies but the performers we saw made water ballet look simple.

They skied by on one ski, no skies, doing the splits, going backwards, sliding along their backsides . . . there wasn't much they wouldn't do.

Evelyn especially enjoyed when the teams flew by.  It looked like they were full grown women but when they skidded onto shore, they were all little tween girls.  All except one.  She was just a really small, older lady.  I had a bit of a deja vu moment--I was sure I'd seen her in the circus or at a fair or something.  Carney, you know.
 They made it look so easy!  Yes, the girls were tiny but the men genuinely were stout.
 In-air spilts while skiing?  Uh, no thanks.

This team of girls was pretty impressive.  They were all in sync in every move while maintaining smiles large enough to rival beauty pageant contestants.
Of course, they weren't perfect.  The much-hyped skiing human pyramid crumbled the second they took off, leaving most of the base and only one of the human building blocks.  Oops.  That's embarrassing.
The second group did better.  A lot better.
 They started out in two pyramids and while skiing climbed into one big one.  Wow.

See?
This poor guy had to embarrass himself the entire evening as the obnoxious host.  At least he didn't seem to mind.  I just hope he was getting paid though I believe he proudly announced that everyone was a volunteer.  Hmm . . .
Of course, the best was last--hurdling over a ramp at high speeds and mid-air, spinning around, landing and triumphantly skiing away.  I couldn't do half of that while on solid ground.
I'll be honest: When I saw the sign for a free water ballet and ski show at a park near the Cedar River where it was performed, I thought it was going to be dorky.  But we took a chance and dropped by.  It was impressive, the girls loved it and I enjoyed skiing again without the risk of any further traumatic injuries.

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