Sunday, 19 July 2009

Kids parties and big slides

The other week Alice had a birthday party to attend. It was at an indoor adventure playground. A great event that all the kids loved.

It was a hot day so everyone was dressed in shorts and sandals. Well there was one part of the adventure playground that the kids were not trying on their own. The vertical drop slide - well they were 4 year old. So, the parents were being coaxed into action to go down the slide with the kids.

Mum wasn't having any of it, so I was volunteered. I thought yep why not - I hadn't done one before...

Helen rushes past on the vertical drop slideImage by Michael Coleman via Flickr

When we were at the top I could see why a 4 year old might be reluctant to throw themselves over the edge - this is part of their education in the past 4 years - don't cross roads without an adult, don't jump into deep water without an adult nearby - and now - it was quite natural to not throw yourself down a vertical slide without an adult!

I sat at the top with Alice on my lap, we did a count to 3 and off we went. The momentary free-fall (maybe I pushed off too hard) was both exhilarating and nerve-wracking. Then contact with the slide. All good so far.

But, there were 3 points of contact on the slide - bum and 2 heels. Bare heels! Normally that wouldn't be so bad, but I had the weight of Alice to support - no amount of only-bum-balancing was going to work. Arrghhhhh...

Alice loved the slide - appropriate scream was attached - I could've let one out but for different reasons.

At the bottom I had 2 very warm heels. On closer inspection they were also very shiny and painful to walk on.

Then I looked at the other parents that had been down the slide - I could tell the ones that must've done it before - yes, they had socks on!

Later in the week we went to a swimming baths which had a couple of water slides, one tame and one faster.

Well the tame one was OK for us to go down together - this meant we went at reduced speed, although we did get stuck in some troughs. After a few goes of this - where we had to get by by bum-shuffling and pulling with the ankles - I noticed a few under-used muscles in my legs!
Not so bad, but to have a little rest we tried the bigger, faster slide - Alice was eager and it would give those newly discovered muscles a rest.

It was big and fast and good fun - almost. My tender heels hadn't quite recovered and no amount of water cushioning was going to help when I was supporting Alice on my lap.

Well, they would probably object to someone on the water slide with woolly socks!

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