It was only 4 days … but it was all I needed to put a spring back in my step.
With Gilles going out of town for work, I was reluctant to stay at home doing nothing. So a last minute plan was hatched, a cheap flight booked, and I was on my way to my sister’s Florida home packing a sense of adventure.
Two northern girls can pack a lot of fun into a few short days and one of those days was spent at the Ringling Museum in Sarasota.
I have never actually been to a circus … I mean the kind with animal acts. I’ve been to Cirque de Soleil performances on many occasions – including this past summer to Luzia, but there was something about the animal acts that never appealed to me.
Combined with my ambivalence towards zoos, I always thought that perhaps I didn’t like animals and that was why the circus had no attraction for me. It wasn’t until I was much older that I realized it was likely because I actually DID like animals.
I remember the circus acts on the Ed Sullivan Show and the big cats in particular bothered me. To me, they always looked humiliated by the tricks they were forced to perform. As any cat owner can attest to, cats aren’t exactly easily trainable. More often than not, it seems we are modifying our behaviour for them rather than the other way around.
What must it have taken to get those big cats to park their instinct?
However, I had heard great things about the Ringling Museum, art collection, and mansion, so it seemed like a logical place to visit … especially after the news that the long-running Ringling Circus would be coming to an end in May.
I quickly discovered that going anywhere on a January weekday morning in Florida means a gathering of people predominantly of the vintage variety. Even worse is the realization that I am in that same demographic.
That, however, did not stop us from behaving like children and engaging in lighthearted silliness.
What amused us the most however, was the crowd attracted to our antics and the line that quickly formed to attempt the same. It only takes one to plant the seed and we soon departed to the sound of giggling seniors.
Fun can be anywhere you choose to find it and for these 2 retired sisters, it was a day at the circus. I’m convinced that inside all of us is a child wanting to come out to play.