The French Revolution with Water Slides

David and I went with Sarah and some of our other friends to a water park in Greensboro on Saturday to celebrate Bastille Day.  I know I say some very elitist things sometimes, but I like to offer up as my evidence of my spirit of egalite my love of a good old-fashioned American water park.  When people are walking around barefooted in only their swimsuits, well, isn’t that the great equalizer of us all? I mean, everyone gets to enjoy Dr. Von Dark’s Tunnel of Terror, regardless of wealth or familial status. Isn’t that what it is all about Robespierre?  As a friend pointed out too, we learned how much Napoleon loved the water park in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure. Sometimes, for the sake of celebrating equality, it means you end up body surfing into 300 pound ladies in the wave pool.  It means tolerating bikinis made from old Confederate battle flags. It means suffering through thunderstorms causing everyone to wait together on the sidelines instead of enjoying the attractions.  Of course, I did not take any pictures of our water park day. That really is for the good of all humanity. If we were all willing to not document how everyone looked in swimsuits so that we had to obsess about it at all times, well, I think Americans of all sizes would be able to get along a little bit better.

The chaos of a water park would be Marie Antoinette’s worst nightmare, I do believe.  When we visited Versailles and Marie’s estate at the Petite Trianon, one couldn’t help but notice that this is a women who was clearly out of touch with reality.  Her “farm” was some 18th century version of a Disney movie.

Do I think Marie Antoinette would have been able to handle the reality of the masses running around barefoot passing around planters’ wart infections to each other while waiting in lines for waterslides? No, I do not. She was a child bride, and bless her heart, she wanted everything to be oh so precious and light-hearted.

Speaking of French monarchial concerns about the masses, I can’t help but wonder what all of the Louises would think about the masses of tourists defiling the halls of Versailles. I know what I thought about it, too many people! (That’s right, if I want to be stuck with the masses, I want to be in a swimsuit and outside, thank you very much). With all of those people the Hall of Mirrors felt like the Hall of Hell to me.

I may be smiling on the outside, but inside my head I am screaming at all of the Chinese tour groups everywhere!

Outside the palace, it was colder, rainier, and all together more pleasant. I realize now, maybe living in these palaces is why those monarchs became so out of touch and awful. Walled up in their ugly, gaudy palaces, the coldness of the marble was contagious and destroyed their hearts.  I know I lost a little bit of my humanity inside there.

But outside, the gardens were pleasant, even if the rain destroyed our macarons.

You can call me crazy, but I think I would prefer an afternoon at the waterpark to living in this palace for twenty years and then having my head lopped off.

Too much gold leafing for my taste! I even would give up the chance to own all of those gardens with the classical pseudo Greek finishes.

Now maybe if the fountains were giant swimming pools, I might reconsider. But only if they were open to the public on Saturdays!

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