For some reason I have yet to recall, I thought that taking the boys to the circus for the first time might be a good way to spend the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.
I know I went to the circus as a child, but I was really young, and most of my memories are I think, actually from the rodeos we attended much more frequently. What can I say, we live in Texas.
As part of my job, I handle the animal cruelty seizure cases. There are often a lot of complaints filed when the circus comes to town, and while we've never had to seize any animals, I've always been afraid I'd get stuck with a dozen or so elephants for which I'd have to find placements. This particular circus was in an adjacent county, so I decided I could be conflict-free.
Which is how, when the Scouts send me an email with discounted circus tickets for that Monday, I decided to do it.
This circus was put on by the Shriner's, an organization I don't quite understand and don't think I really want to understand. Nor do I understand what they have to do with the circus. They wear silly little beanie caps, and I couldn't explain why to the boys. All I really know about them is that Mr. Cunningham was a member (or of something like the Shriners).
Maybe the hats are circus hats? Anyways, we walked in and were greeted by some clowns. We
We don't have clown phobias, but some of these clowns were strange enough to perhaps start one for me. I mean, this one is freakishly small. Is it a child? A midget? Ryan wasn't quite sure about this clown, either.
Or this one. I had to "donate" money to the Shriner's to get these autograph books for the clowns. Wish I'd been better prepared, because they spent the bulk of the day in my purse, only to go ignored until they found their way to the recycle bin.
There's a pre-show on the floor where you can donate even more money to the Shriner's in exchange for camel rides and elephant rides.
I was glad the boys weren't excited about this.
Finally, it was time for the show to start.
The first big opening act involved tigers.
This was not a good way to start the circus off for me. Some of the tigers were less than thrilled at leaving their cage and making their way into their enclosed tent. It took a couple of different guys and some forceful prodding with large sticks to get them into the arena. And even when they were there, you could tell they weren't really into performing (I'm guessing they also expected a federal holiday meant time off)
Fortunately, the circus improved and I didn't see any other possible animal abuse while we were there. Most of it was acrobatics and stunts.
After almost two hours, I was very excited when it was clear things were winding down. Oh, no... it was just a thirty minute intermission, before the second half started.
I personally found the very lengthy circus excruciating. However, there were motorcycle stunts, and people flying out of rockets, and Team Danger just ate this cr@p up.