Thursday, February 23, 2017

Some Of The Oldest Kinds Of Magic


How often in life do we get to have an experience which is absolutely what we had envisioned, what we had hoped for?
Very rarely, I think. But tonight, well...we went to the circus and it was everything I would want in a circus.

Like I said this morning, the Zerbini Family Circus is a small operation. Everyone involved does everything, it seemed to me. The man who walked the boys around on the camel, so slowly, so patiently,


appeared in the Big Top just moments later wearing a spangly jacket. He was the ring master and animal trainer. I guess he could be called an animal trainer. He put the horses and camels through their paces. Those and the dogs were all the animals represented. And I loved the dogs. They were just a group of little mutts who did silly little tricks and got big applause because who doesn't love little mutts doing silly little tricks for an exotic woman with knee-high boots and eye lashes out to here?


There were beautiful ladies in sparse and sparkly costumes doing things high up in the air!


And babies trying to imitate them from the safety of their mama's laps. 



There were clowns who were not scary at all but who made us laugh so hard. I swear, the children absolutely were enthralled. Not just my grandchildren but ALL of the children. There were no screens, no TV's, no nothing but thrills and skills and grace and color and music.



There were jugglers and acrobats, there were roustabouts who ran from one set-up to another, who handled the ropes that the acrobats performed from, dangling from the top of the tent. These men fascinated and amazed me as much or more than the performers and sometimes, they were working the ropes one minute and performing the next. There was a magic lady who could change her costume in a tenth of a second, hidden from view in a silken cover. She looked a lot like the dog handler. There was the smell of popcorn and of horse and camel poop. There was cotton candy and there were cheap toys and the lady clown involved Gibson in her act and he glowed with the joy of it. 
It was hokey and wonderful and beautiful. 


It was a little bit of genuine, exotic magic, right here in Lloyd, Florida with the pine trees in the background. And when the clown turned into the man on the death-defying wheel, I had to hold Owen's hand because I thought my heart could not take it. 


I don't think there will be any circuses around in a very short time. They are disappearing as we speak and, well, I don't know, but there was just something that felt so human and real about it all which is exactly what I had wanted to feel and it was there. Right there in the costumes and the muscular bodies and the gasps and the roaring of laughter and the clapping of hands and the smiles on the faces of the babies and the children and the mamas and the daddies and the old grandmas too.


Think about it- think about the hundreds of years that little troupes of performers have traveled around, setting up tents and taking money for the pleasure and enjoyment of the people who stayed in one place, who so rarely got to see anything exotic or thrilling or magical or colorful. For whom church was probably the only real entertainment except for the village storyteller, the local musicians who played now and then at festivals or fairs. 
How people must have craved this entertainment! 
I think we probably still do although we don't realize it, our senses dulled by videos and movies with surround sound and every special effect they can cram into them, all of it sort of a faux excitement which you can be reminded of by the toys that come in Happy Meals at MacDonald's. 

But tonight, we went to the circus. And Owen and Gibson will never forget that bumpy lap around the little field so high up in the air on the back of a camel. They will never forget the lady who wrapped herself in the velvet chiffons hanging from the top of the tent and then, let herself unroll in them so fast she was a blur until her feet touched the ground safely again. They will probably never forget the tiny dog who climbed the tall, tall ladder as quick as a minute and then who leapt into space to land in the arms of the pretty lady. 

At least, I hope they never forget. 

I won't. 

Love...Ms. Moon

43 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I thought of you so much, Rebecca, and how you would have loved every bitty bit of it. I truly did.

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  2. I feel like I was there. Beautifully described.
    Xoxo
    Barbara

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    1. I hope you could feel the thrilling excitement of it all.

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  3. What a lovely time for your family!

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  4. Replies
    1. It seemed so very, very...right. You know?

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  5. Oh how I wish I could take my little boy to that circus. It looks so perfect and fun. I recently read Louisa May Alcott's book "Under the Lilacs" and it involves a circus just like this. The book was magical. Your grandkids are so lucky! ~Sarah from Columbus

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    1. Obviously, I need to reread that book. I loved it as a child. Thank you for reminding me.

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  6. reading your post was almost like experiencing it myself. I am so glad you all went...... what a thrill! I only wish I had been there to enjoy it as well. Your grandchildren will remember this forever!!!!!!!!!!!
    Susan M

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    1. I hope they do! I hope they remember it!

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  7. How wonderful! I love the picture of the boys on the camel!

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    1. They were thrilled! Riding on a camel! Imagine that!

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  8. Gorgeous. The Upsidedown Maggie picture is so perfect.

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    1. I swear to you- she was imitating the performer. I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it.

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  9. How great! I love that you all went and the kids had so much fun. It's sad that circuses are becoming a thing of the past.

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    1. I'm just SO glad we went, Steve. You know me- ready and willing to make an excuse to stay home. But I somehow knew this was going to be very special. And it was.

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  10. You took us along with you in this wonderful Post and I'm in complete agreement, there is nothing quite like it and it would be indeed sad if they all ceased to exist one day and future generations could not have that experience! So Glad you had the amazing time I was sure you would. Dawn... The Bohemian

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    1. I hoped with all of my heart that it would be half as wonderful as it was.
      I'm so glad we went.

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  11. Thanks for sharing the magical essence of the circus with us.

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  12. OMG!!! So AWESOME!!! Next best thing to being there. XXOO

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    1. I believe truly that you guys would have loved it. When are you coming to see me?!

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  13. Thanks for taking us there with you! I got such a kick out of Maggie trying to do the tricks. The scale of this circus seems perfect and how great that the clowns were non scary. I used to dream of running away to join the circus. Didn't we all.

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    1. Yes. The scale WAS perfect. And it wasn't tawdry at all. Small, a bit hokey, but lovely too.
      Do you remember Toby Tyler?

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  14. Also that photo from outside the tent is outstanding.

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  15. Loved your post; transported me back to a happier time. Big circuses are disappearing, I wonder how the small ones can stay in business with the cost of insurance, transport, animal feed, et al.

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    1. I have no idea. They must absolutely love what they do.

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  16. We have a wonderful small circus school here that is training kids from the area and from around the world...so never fear, the magic isn't done yet!

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    1. Yes! But if there is no place for these performers to perform and make their living- then...what?

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  17. Do not despair, up here in southern Vermont we have a circus school - New England Center for Circus Arts. They teach all kinds of aerial and gymnastics stuff. They're as busy as can be. :)

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    1. FSU has a circus school and has forever. Which is wonderful! But, as I said in my reply above- if there are no circuses to make a living in, then what?

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  18. Cool circus. I don't usually like them but this one seemed small and sweet and non-scary. Maggie was adorable trying to copy the act. You have a charming life on your blog. I want to be part of it.

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  19. You're grinning like a kid! My neighbor's sister is an acrobat.
    Circuses will continue to exist, especially small ones. No more caged lions or chained elephants.

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    1. This is true. I hope. There can only be so many Cirque du Soleii. I want the small, family- owned and run operations to be able to support themselves. Small businesses!

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  20. oh I'm so glad for all of it, for the kids, for you. I'll be sorry when the last little circus closes down.

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  21. Well, I never comment (just read and love) but this made my day!

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  23. So glad you and the family got to go to this small circus and that you took us along on your blog. They are still quite common in Europe, at least in the south of France, and I do love them. They rotate through the countryside and time their performances for school holidays. I wrote about one that came to Soreze in the early, active days of my blog
    http://n2notesfromabroad.blogspot.com/2009/02/le-cirque-tzigane-gypsy-circus.html
    Here's hoping they thrive and proliferate here in the US to replace the big circus that is closing. x0 N2

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