American in Spain


September 21, 2010
Nora-Go-Round (freeze frame)

by erikrasmussen, on Flickr")Recently I've been worried that Nora might have inherited the apparently dominant motion sickness gene from my paternal grandmother. My father and all his siblings have it; I have it; and now it looks like Nora might have it. She doesn't mind being strapped into her car seat in the car, as long as the car isn't accelerating - and I mean that in the proper vector physics sense. Any time the car goes faster, brakes, or turns, Nora lets out a howl of annoyance. More than once I've seen that "Oh god, please make the world stop spinning!" look in her eye. It's really heart-wrenching to see her feeling so poorly. We travel with a towel in the car at all times now. Given all the above, I've naturally assumed that she would dislike most amusement park attractions like her father does. Last Saturday, however, we went to Laredo for a walk, and there was a merry-go-round set up. As soon as we were within earshot, she was transfixed. She refused to walk in any direction that was not towards the merry-go-round, with its flashing lights and loud kiddie pop music. Curious to see what she'd do, and frustrated that we weren't able to go anywhere else, we walked her up to the merry-go-round to watch. She was fascinated, dancing to the music and watching it go around with the innocent look of amazement only a child's face can show.

At two euros for a three minute ride, it seemed like quite the rip-off, but we were curious to see what would happen. I was fully prepared for her to start screaming and to whisk her off the ride as soon as it started.

Much to my surprise, however, she really and truly enjoyed the ride! The fact that my phone is also a video camera meant that I could capture the moment of joy. Every time she passed her mother, she shrieked with delight and started looking for her to go by again.

It seems that we are now firmly in the age of coin operated amusement.