One thing that will always remind me of my grandma is a carousel ride. When I was younger a new carousel came to her area. Each horse was very unique and specially design based on who had sponsored the horse. I always loved “American Beauty”, a white horse with an American flag hanging from the side of its saddle. Every time we visited my grandma, she would proudly take us to the carousel for a couple rides, claiming it was the best in the United States. It really is one of a kind and truly beautiful, but I never dared burst her bubble that there are probably some great carousels across this great land. Because of my grandma’s brainwashing, Missoula’s will always be the best.

Before I went for my visit I told my mom I wanted to take grandma to the carousel like we had so many times. My mom quickly dashed my hopes and dreams – she was far too old, the carousel moved far too fast.

But I’m nothing if not persistant. The first day I threw the idea out to my grandma. She laughed at me. A couple hours later I brought it up again, and again. My mom continually shot me the look, “Are you crazy?” But I was not going to give up. The next day I also brought it up more than a couple times. Before long my grandma had agreed to go. By the time we were ready to go she was napping. I think my mom thought this was her out. I went and woke her up and you better believe we took her to the carousel.

She sat in the chariot with my mom as it went around in circles. I forgot just how fast it was – it’s not a leisurely ride. It’s far more intense than I remembered and then of course it made sense as to why my mom would be hesitant to take her 94 year old mother on it. My grandma fared fine – my mom however was feeling a bit dizzy by the time we were through.

I think adults enjoy the ride a bit more than kids. There is a dragon that holds rings in its mouth and as you circle around you grab them in hopes of getting the gold one. My brothers tried to see just how many they could grab in one pass. My sister snagged the gold ring on our last ride – a ring that I failed to pull out of the mouth as I was more concerned about the camera I was holding than the ring.

I was beaming after our little visit – the carousel will forever remind me of my grandma and I was so happy she was there to enjoy it with us. My favorite aspect of our outing…video footage/interview of my grandma as we got her settled in the chariot with my mom in the background giving a terrified look. It is priceless!