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I’ve never been fond of heights so it’s likely that I’ve never been on a Ferris wheel ride before. There’s just something about trusting few pieces of rusty metal bars formed in a shape of a wheel with little cars to ride on, painted with bright colors to attract the curious eyes of passers-by that didn’t sit well with me. However, I was helplessly dragged into one on one of the carnival rides in town. I obliged, albeit unenthused.

As the kind men operating the ride locked in the safety bars on the side, I sent a prayer above in case of emergency. Something clenched inside my stomach when the wheel started to move. My friend nudged me to open my eyes and to peek around. I shook my head. Before he could react more, the wheel moved again until we were on top as they boarded new passengers.
My feet were dangling in the air. The slight breeze from this altitude hit my face refreshingly. If I hadn’t been so high up in this silly carnival ride, I would’ve greedily sucked in the air I so desperately needed.

The wheel started moving…and it was moving fast. I could barely hear the others because all I could hear was the frantic beating of my heart. All I could feel was the rust sticking to my palm as I held on to the safety bars that didn’t seem so safe anymore. My stomach clenched every time we reach the top and then plummet to the bottom. We’re whizzing into the air and the others were giggling and shouting while I held on for dear life, holding in my nausea.
“Open your eyes,” my friend shouted at me. “Shout and don’t keep it in. You’ll feel better, I promise.”

I did not shake my head this time. I followed his advice. As soon as our car moved up, I slowly tried to open my eyes and when we reached the very top, I bravely looked around. As soon as our car plunged down to the ground, I screamed until my throat and lungs gave.
In no time at all, it was time to go down. My eyes were wet with tears, my stomach in knots and my throat scratchy from too much shouting. We were at the very top, then, while others climbed off their cars below, when I decided to open my eyes wide. I was looking down at the town full of people rushing off to wherever they plan to go to. They look so little from this angle. The wind was blowing and I took it all in. My stomach eased and soon unclenched and that nauseating feeling passed so quickly. Seeing things in a new perspective was enlightening.

Maybe that’s why people can’t achieve what they have always dreamed of. They’re too blinded by fear. If only people have the courage to open their eyes, like I did while I was up there, conquering their fears, maybe then they’ll see things in a new perspective and slowly achieve it. Maybe people were just those tiny creatures circling you. Once you’ve conquered your fears and let yourself believe, you’d be on top. But remember to always stay grounded or you’ll go plummeting down to the hard and cold concrete.


Written for my cousin. September 20, 2014.
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