The Matron has discovered the most unpleasant tourist attraction in the United States –and there’s a lot of competition for that title.
The armpit of consumer culture?
First, let her acknowledge that her expectations and reality were pretty much separate planets. She was thinking state park, roaring blue falls, white caps, crystal skies and the sound of water and sea gulls. Sorta sanctuary-like.
Instead, her family stumbled into an enormous plastic city built around the falls—a city defined by junky trinkets, trashy clothes, fast food, candy, and outrageously expensive services. Truly, she had no idea so imagine her shock when instead of chirping birds and an oasis, she drove into something resembling Las Vegas; yes, there are casinos and hotels along the falls (and a haunted house, how logical).
Perhaps the road-weary Matron took the capitalist blow to the belly a little harder because of extenuating circumstances:
· Air temperature? Nearing 100 cloudless degrees
· Holiday? Check that, too. Monday was the official national day of rest following the fourth and people were spending it, well, like she was – at Niagara Falls.
· Road-weary and in search of respite? They’re back on the road, heading from New Jersey to Minnesota.
· Three days in the minivan with the three children? No comment necessary
After a gruesome two hours, the family crawled back to the minivan and escaped. Yes, yes the falls themselves were astounding – beautiful, majestic, bright, and all that. And, He Who Cannot Be Named enjoyed the opportunity to hone his skills as a cultural critic, skills that are shaping up to be razor-sharp and insightful. Much like HWCBN himself. The Matron enjoyed watching that brain at work.
But the Niagara Falls pink princess sweat pants with “Fall For This” written on the butt or the mini-driver’s licenses or “I luv NY” plastic leopard print purses?
Not so much. . . .