Timeless Thoughts: Hide and Seek playground
Timeless Thoughts is a monthly linkup hosted by Georgie and Tara, where bloggers write about something from their past – it could be an item, a place, an event – anything that evokes a trip down memory lane. Timeless Thoughts is held on the first Saturday of the month, and runs for two weeks.
When I was in kindergarten, there was a giant playground in the local shopping centre that cost some money to get in (probably a lot of money), but was very popular with the kids at my school. It was called Hide and Seek, and it was the place to have your birthday. You were the cool kid if your birthday was this month and your birthday party was going to be there.
Since I was born in May and much younger than my peers, my birthday was always after everyone else’s, thus I was one of the last to have their birthday at Hide and Seek. The excitement didn’t die though. Everyone wanted to go to the playground, year after year.
Hide and Seek was quite dark themed, multi-level – which, for a kid, meant that there were five levels of crawling and standing to be thoroughly enjoyed – had a ball pit, a giant slide, and gave a real sense of adventure. No parents allowed. They wouldn’t even fit in there. When you said goodbye to your parents, you could be in that adventure playground for well over an hour.
Actually, you’d avoid the giant slide, too, because usually your parents were waiting at the bottom of it. If I remember correctly, it was the only way out, and went from somewhere at the top of the playground, all the way to the bottom, and the end, exiting the main ‘body’ of the playground. The ‘body’ was just a giant walled-in area, so you can think of it as just being building-shaped with nothing sticking out or anything.
I wish I had photos of this place.
I wish this place still existed.
I wish – even though I have nightmares of my friend eating chicken nuggets dipped into his Coca Cola at my birthday party at Hide and Seek – that this playground existed somewhere, in some form, and wasn’t just closed and demolished and replaced with a food court and boring offices, and twenty years later, an electronics store and a gym, but – no, it’s gone.
And it was in the era of no-internet that Hide and Seek existed, so there’s nothing on the internet about it. There is some place in Canada called Hide N Seek, and even my memory does not serve me well as to remember whether the ‘and’ was stylised… but what I remember of Hide and Seek is a little corner of my head that makes me smile with glee.
As I have grown up, I have not seen a playground that can even be likened to Hide and Seek. Its dark sort of atmosphere gave a childish sense of trepidation and fun, something that lacks in today’s playgrounds, which are normally extremely bright, colourful and well lit. Nothing is quite the same. I feel like it would taint my memory to even include a photo of any other playground in this post.
So I’m left to think… Hide and Seek is hiding, forever.
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