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Sunday, October 31, 2004

Trick or Treating!

Well, I have had an entire weekend of halloweeeeen fun. On Saturday, I went to a halloween carnival at one of the local swamp gardens. I took dirty Fila with me. She went dressed as a teen goth witch. She had on the fishnet hose, all in black and I did some goth makeup on her. She had on a wig that was 1/2 white and 1/2 black. She was looking very "Osbournish!"

The swamp garden was out about 30 miles away in the middle of nowhere....we got there about 8pm. We left home about 7:25. The ride was so dark it was creepy. I knew how to get there but it seemed very strange. There was noone on the road but us. You would think that if there was a party going on there would be other cars heading the same way. There were none. There was no lights for about 10 miles. This is a state run, historical, swamp park. dirty Fila began to get nervous. I was even nervous. I just knew I had taken a wrong turn and had entered the swamp park twilight zone. dirty Fila even asked if I had enough gas she was so scared.

Finally we made it and no wonder there were no cars on the road. They were all at the swamp park. The lot was jammed. It only opened at 7:30 so we had made goot time I thought. Boy was I wrong. We got out tickets and immediately made out way to the haunted swamp ride. It was the main attraction. We had an hour wait in line. And by the tinme we had been standing there for 15 minutes there were about 60 other people lined up behind us.

The boat we got into held 4 and the boat guide. We were very low to the water and it was eerie. we pushed off and the swamp is just what it is...a swamp full of alligators. The rule as we got into the boat was no arms or legs over the side or even outstretched over the water. Gators can jump! So off we went into the total darkness into the gator laden swamps in a row boat powered by 1 man rowing. He told ghost swamp tales and some of the trees did have tiki torches attached so that we could see a few things.. they had skeletons hung on some trees and skulls around as well. We were deep in the woods so of course there were a few other employees near the banks firing up chain saws like Jason was coming. It was creepy.

There were even a few scuba divers in the swamps as well. When they would jump up out of the water right next to the boat that was terrifying....and to me just a little unsafe. The couple behind us jumped and almost capsized us into the swamp. The guide had to jerk his body to the other side to keep us afloat. dirty Fila and I were in the very front, very low to the water so there was nothing we could do accept hold on and try to keep very still and in the center of that row boat.

The water was like glass and very still. Swamps are very still, I did not realize. The water does not seem to move and was only disturbed when the oar was put in the water. The moon was full. I asked about the divers and the was that safe for them. The guide said that the gators pretty much stay off the path where the boats travel so the divers were safe. He said they had been doing the haunted swamp ride for the last 8 years and so far no diver has ever been attacked. The divers just stay in the same path of the boat and they are fine. Man...I would not be doing that.

One other freaky thing happened. There was a boat about 10 minutes ahead of us that we somehow caught up with. That boat driver ran into us because his boat was out of control. Luckily it was not a hard impact. It was his first time out and he was having trouble steering. A fish jumped into the boat and a woman in the middle began to scream and freak out about the fish. The fish was flopping around and she was freaked. Fish are harmless. I would be worreid about a snake in the boat..we were in the swamps you know. But not a fish. I saw her legs go out over the water.

The rule is no legs or arms outstretched over the water and there she was doing that because a fish jumped into the boat. I saw people in front of her reaching around trying to get the fish. Finally someone did and put it back in the water. Man I was ready to get back to shore after that but we had about 15 minutes to go.

I said a prayer that we would get out of this very small rowboat and out of that swamp safely. We finally did. dirty Fila did not want to walk the haunted trails after that. She said that she had had enought of the spooky woods on the drive up. She did not want to go into the woods to be chased around by Jason and Freddy. I wanted to go but she did not, so we passed. We then went over to the big screen the had set up by the butterfly house and watched classic episodes of the Twilight Zone. Episodes from the 1960's. It was good. They were good. Eerie. There was also a scavenger hunt and a story teller.

You would think the fun was over, but no it was not. We left about 11pm and had that long spooky ride back to civilization. On the way back I got lost and we had to retrace out path 2 times. dirty Fila got scared and becan to cry that we would never get out that swamp. I told her that I would get her home safe and finally once I got back to the main road and told her things looked familiar, her crying stopped. She said she may not want to go back there. At this point, I am not sure I would either.

Ponder this: A mother and daughter thought they were out for a night of halloween fun at a local state swamp park. Little did they know that the swamp is a place where innocent souls can get lost. Instead of the swamp, mother and daughter had entered the twilight zone!

What I do is kick them in the pants with a diamond buckled shoe!
~~Aileen Mehle~~

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