Saturday, May 14, 2016

May 13: Hagfish, Shrine Circus, Best Night Ever

That's my son on the hump . . .
The world is full of creatures that for some reason seem stranger to us than others, and libraries are full of books describing them--hagfish, platypuses, lizardlike pangolins four feet long with bright green, lapped scales like umbrella-tree leaves on a bush hut roof, butterflies emerging from anthills, spiderlings wafting through the air clutching tiny silken balloons, horseshoe crabs . . . the creator creates.  Does he stoop, does he speak, does he save, succor, prevail?  Maybe.  But he creates; he creates everything and anything.

Dillard marvels at the complexity of creation.  Hagfish and platypus, butterfly and spiderling.  She notes the possibility of anything to exist.  It is a fascination that keeps people flocking to things like zoos and circuses--because of the chance to see these wonders up close. 

Now, I am going to talk about attending a circus.  Please do not send any angry comments my way.  I know all the stories.  I have read Water for Elephants.  I am not writing this post to shed light on injustice in the animal kingdom.  I am writing because the Shrine Circus came to town, and my son got to ride on a camel and an elephant.  A dream come true for a seven-year-old boy.  Plus he got cotton candy and popcorn.

It was a small circus, with more jugglers and clowns than big cats and pachyderms.  My son sort of wandered around the arena with eyes as large as silver dollars.  The first thing he did was climb onto a camel.  Then he got a light saber.  Then he rode on the back of an elephant.  He was in heaven.

My daughter and her boyfriend came along, too.  Of course, teenagers have to play it a little cooler than a seven-year-old does.  Before the show began, they were texting and Snapchatting.  When the lights went down, however, they were all about the Siberian tigers and contortionists.  My favorite act:  two women who were quick change artists, switching from dress to dress in a shower of confetti.  It made me feel like a kid again.

Of course, the bottles of water were three dollars each, and a small box of popcorn cost five dollars.  Riding an elephant set us back $15.  We didn't get our faces painted, and no snake pictures were taken.  (I wasn't particularly interested in wrapping a boa constrictor around my neck.)  Circuses are expensive.

But, my son got to see real elephants and tigers.  At the end of the night, as I was getting him in his pajamas, he said, "I had the best night ever."

Saint Marty can't put a price tag on that.

My son out for a stroll on his elephant

1 comment:

  1. Best night ever.
    Pretty awesome gift to give someone.