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Everyone loves a circus

So I now know what my wife looks like when the rug gets pulled out from under her.

Last week, I mentioned to Miriam that the circus was coming to town, and I was planning to spend part of our Saturday taking pictures.

At first, she was excited. Unable to hold back the inner child that still sits in awe of all the action under the big top, she started firing questions.

What kind of circus is it? Where would it be? How long would it last?

Where is it again?

And then the conversation ground to a halt with one final question: "How do they get elephants in the armory?"

She hung up on me after I couldn't stop laughing.

When I saw her later that evening, she still wasn't happy. I'm not sure if she was mad at me for laughing at her, or still pouting that I'd talked her into going to a circus that had no elephant.

She obviously wasn't familiar with the Esqueda Brothers Circus Extravaganza. The traveling troupe of family performers has become an annual tradition in Thomson, packing people into the armory to watch performing dogs, aerial acts, clowns and jugglers. (Although some of the parents seemed to enjoy the appearance of the SpongeBob look-a-like a little too much Saturday night.)

Elephants, though, are not part of the deal. At least not in Thomson.

Miriam overcame her disappointment at the pachyderm void and saddled up to a seat on the back row in the armory. A few minutes into the show, Miriam had that smile on her face that is usually reserved for Grey's Anatomy or Desperate Housewives. (She really enjoyed figuring out which performers multi-tasked during the show, like Matthew Esqueda - the clown, juggler and dog trainer.

She admitted as we were walking to the car that she had a good time and would like to see the show again next year.

Even if the elephant doesn't make an appearance.

MEANWHLE, I'D LIKE to wish Wesley Willingham and the handful of other soldiers connected with the local National Guard unit the best of luck as they prepare to head off for duty in Iraq. The group left McDuffie County a little more than a week ago and are set to be gone for a while.

Wesley - my next door neighbor - was a one-man neighborhood watch team. I'll do my best to fill a little of that void, but it certainly won't be the same without him in the neighborhood.

At the same time, he's off doing something he loves and serving our country. Keeping a close eye on his world at home is the least I can do.

Web posted on Thursday, February 2, 2006

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