Frollo At the Fair

Part One

Danisha Wood, Claude Frollo's Bubbling Brown Sugar, has graciously invited His Grace to a day at the State Fair. Now, we all know how His Excellency feels about "the licentious crowd", and "shallow, drunken stupors".
However, let's not forget that the fair is a family event; Claude is about to have the time of his life. But...dear Nisha helps him along. Poor baby does get confused whenever he visits the 20th Century. Read on...

"Danisha! Does this look rustic, yet stylish, enough for a day at your fair?"
Claude Frollo walked into the kitchen and modeled his new modern ensemble of tight black jeans, a black, purple-trimmed Western shirt, a black snakeskin belt with sterling silver buckle, and black cowboy boots. I had to stand back while my eyes roamed all over his slim figure.
Man, I'll say it again...Claude can make rags look good...Damn, he's so fine! And here I am in this demim ensemble 末 Jeans, a patchwork jacket, a red gingham shirt, sneakers...I look like Dolly Parton smacked into Diahann Carroll!

"Sugarbritches, when we walk through that gate, I can guarantee that every woman's head will turn..."
Claude laughed, took me into his arms, then kissed me deeply. He said, "My love, I'm ever so grateful for your generous invitation. I've enjoyed my summer immensely, especially that lovely weekend at that cabin 末 and the peaches."
I needed to say nothing, for I knew Claude meant that wild weekend at Mark's cabin 末 AND his mirrored bedroom!

"My dearest, I'm so looking forward to this: A 20th Century state fair 末 AND I'm anxious to see all those ribbons you've won!"
Ribbons? Oh yes, every year, I enter some of my best needlework and baking. This year I was the proud winner of Best of Crochet 末 All I got was a big purple rosette and Claude was so proud of me for doing so. Then again, he's proud of whatever I do.

Over a light breakfast 末 And I do mean light since I planned to do some heavy duty damage at the food vendors 末 Claude and I discussed beforehand what's to see and do at the Fair.
"Well, there's all the farm exhibits: the animals, the equipment, machinery. Then there's the home arts: that's cooking, baking, needlearts, painting, crafts, and antiques. The state colleges have exhibits; then there's 4-H...the list goes on and on."
I grinned when I added, "Ah yes, the food...Ooh! My kingdom for a grilled porkchop sandwich and a lemonade shakeup!"

At this last comment, Claude laughed heartily then explained that, "My love, you know I can display a hearty appetite as well. Since that terrible heatwave has broken, well..."
Indeed, the oppressive heat and humidity, that plagued much of the city for the past few days, finally broke and ushered in a long stretch of comfortably warm days and cool nights. For August, it wasn't too bad.

"Honey, I hope you brought enough..."
Claude patted his pocket, saying, "Oh my love, you know perfectly well I don't make a trip to your time without it."
I smiled, then swallowing the last of my coffee, said, "Well, then let's get going, unless you want to wait around 'til noon and fight the crowds."


The weather cooperated, all right...Not too warm, but pleasant and sunny...Not too crowded -- yet! Glad I suggested a mid-week trip to the fair...Claude will have nothing but fun! I can tell already...

We strolled through the not-quite-crowded fairgrounds, and Claude's eyes began to take in EVERYTHING. He favorably commented on everything from the size of the fairgrounds itself, to the many different buildings.

"My love, I've attended country fairs in my youth, but I can say in complete honesty that nothing remotely compares to this!"
I grinned then said, "Well, we'd better make this day truly memorable And it is YOUR day! So, sugarbritches, where to first?"
Claude drew closer to me, put his arm around my waist, and said, "I want to see your fine needlework, and ALL those ribbons!"


The Home and Family Arts Building is a monstrous brick structure dating back to the early part of this century. Housed in this building are the talents of many a needleworker, baker, cook, artist, collector, and handcrafter. Of course, I've always loved this place, just to marvel at all the fine workmanship. Claude immediately fell in love with EVERYTHING! The quilts, the knitted and crocheted works, the fine paintngs and photographs, and, especially, the antiques.

"My love," he said as he examined several pieces of Depression glass, then moved his eyes to 19th Century china, "This is so grand...Ah, these teacups are quite charming."
When we moved from antiques to the needlework, I finally found MY work, and the ribbons. Claude was so proud when he finally saw that black and purple shawl, that he forgot himself and kissed me on the cheek. A couple next to us started to snicker, but Claude beamed when he told them, "You are looking at the lady who created this lovely work of art...And I can tell you I am so proud of her."
OK, Claude...Rub it in, will you? In a way, I like all this attention...


After a lengthy stay in the Family Arts Building, Claude expressed a wish to see 20th Century livestock. I suggested that we do this, then enjoy a relaxing lunch before hitting other attractions.
I've always loved the farm animals; they're really my favorite part of the fair. When I was a kid, my father insisted on taking us through the livestock barns, just to gain appreciation for, "The hard work farmers do for us."

"And I haven't forgotten those lessons either," I said to Claude as we strolled through the various buildings, admiring the myriad breeds of cattle, sheep, and swine. It was on the way to the sheep barn that we stopped momentarily to watch the 4-H kids show off their fancy horsemanship.
"These young people are so dedicated to their animals...Did I hear you correctly, that the youngsters raised the animals from birth..."
"That's right, baby. A whole year's worth of preparation and hard work, and it all comes down to this." Claude intently watched a young lady perform intricate manuevers with her fine Arabian stallion. He leaned over and said, "I've seen enough of these saddlebreds, although they are quite 'light' for my taste. Are there...?
"Ah, you want to see some REAL horses?" I took him by the hand and said, "Walk this way."



"There're Clydesdales, Belgians, and...Claude?"
We weren't in the draft horse barn fiveminutes before Claude became quite engrossed with the massive black Percheron stallion nearby. And he was impressed with the fancy wagons, collars, and other equipment. Naturally, he immediately drummed up a lively conversation with the horses' owners and wished them well in upcoming competitions.

"There you are!", I said as Claude Frollo petted the nose of a Percheron mare whose coat had turned a lovely dappled grey.
"Danisha, I want to thank you for bringing me here. So far, I have had such a wonderful time, however..."
I noticed that Claude referred to the fact we would be at the fairgrounds most of the day, and that he didn't bother to wear a hat. Well...He couldn't very well wear that triangular hat...Wait! I have an idea!
"Claude, why don't we mosey over to see the pigs, then I'll treat you..."
He glanced at me, then smiled when he realized what I meant. "Ah, so you noticed those rather chic...'cowboy' hats." Claude smiled even broader as we exited the barn and headed for this booth that sold all kinds of Western wear. So I bought dear Claude a black, broad brimmed, silver trimmed cowboy hat. He looked like he was ready to hit the Grand Ole Opry stage rather than hold court in the Palais.
"Honey, you look so fine."
"And I feel so grand! My dear Nisha, this is just what I needed. Now I can be quite chic, AND protect my delicate eyes from your harsh Midwestern sun."

We decided to visit the swine barn later when Claude asked, "Danisha, what shall serve as our noon repast?"
"Are you hungry, sugarbritches? Well, what's your pleasure?", I asked as we strolled down past the Grandstand.
Claude smiled and replied, "Surprise me."

And with that, we found ourselves on 'The Porch', a lovely open deck with patio tables and chairs. "Claude, why don't you find us a table and I'll get some food. Hey, you can watch these fools try to sing." I was referring to a karaoke festival, sponsored by a local radio station, that was currently underway.
Claude settle back, propped up his feet, and asked, "What is this 'karaoke'?"
"It's a singalong to recorded music. See that girl up there with the mike? Well, she's reading the lyrics off that video screen."
"But what if one already knows the lyrics?"
"Then I guess that person won't have to stand in front of that monitor. In other words, he or she can dance and sing to their hearts content."

I gave Claude Frollo a curious look before I left to buy us lunch. Now, how was I to know that someone had a notion to serenade the crowd -- and me -- with a sweet rendition of "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You". Elvis himself would've been proud of Claude Frollo's performance -- And so was I.

In Part Two
Claude Frollo endears himself to fairgoers...His Grace develops a taste for (most) fair food...Nisha buys presents for her 15th Century friends...Our time traveling lovers end their day at the State Fair with some down-home, foot-stomping fun. Head for The Conclusion!

ゥCopyright FrolloFreak, 1998.

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