Today I read a bit of trivia about escalators - I'm always on the lookout for a good bit on shopping mall conveyance- and learned the very first escalator was actually an amusement park ride in 1896.  This brings up some questions.  Was it just an 'up' escalator and then the kids had to take a slide or the stairs 'down?'  Did they invent the 'down' escalator in 1897?

More importantly, it brought up some lovely small-town farm kid memories for me.  There were no escalators in my  daily life.  When we went to the nearest large town (Aberdeen) to shop at JCPenny, if we wanted to go to the second level, we hoofed it up the stairs brother!  So you can imagine the joy we experienced when we went to the BIG city and encountered our first escalator at Southdale or Ridgedale.  Much to the disgust of our city friends, we didn't want to shop, we just wanted to ride the escalators up and down like the wide-eyed hayseeds we were!  Even today when I step onto an escalator, I'm reminded of the excitement nine year old Tracy experienced.

Then I had kids, and the escalator struck all kinds of freaky-escalator-accident fear in my gut.  Whereas my mom went shopping and left us to 'ride' the escalator, I was instructed to hold their hand and WARN my children about the escalator dangers which lurked on the way to the second floor of Herberger's.

Luckily, the kids made it through their childhood with all ten fingers and toes to show for it.  Although I'm sure they don't appreciate the thrill of an exciting escalator ride.