I'm not a fan of the circus especially here in Germany where the use of wild animals is still allowed. Surely these magnificent and proud creatures should be roaming free in their homelands and not be forced to jump through flaming hoops for the entertainment of those who should know better. It's abhorrent.
So my heart sank when Finje spotted a poster claiming, "A day without laughter is a day lost". Accompanying it, a horrendously creepy, grinning clown.
I noticed it a nano-second before Fin and grappled feebly to come up with an alternative meaning for this freaky, pale-faced, red-nosed, über-cheerful, misfit. A visit from George Bush perhaps?
Wow, Mama, look the circus!"
After an impressive query-avoidance-manoeuvre, I returned home to do some research, still harbouring the vain hope she might have a convenient bout of amnesia during kindergarten.This circus though, had no wild animals. No elephants, lions, tigers or bears (oh my) but a goat, three dogs, six pigeons and a Shetland pony.
Arriving on the big day, I gave an Oscar winning performance as the tent came into view. Not much bigger than the one I shared with 3 others when doing my Duke of Edinburgh's Award, it was slightly grubby and didn't look 100% stable. It was stripy though.
"Wow Finje, look at that tent. It's fantastic. I bet you can't wait to go in. I certainly can't!"
The condition of the tent was a fair indication of the production to follow. A family run affair, the performers consisted of two sisters and their two children. Put bluntly, it was a poor do. The PA system failed during the first announcement. Manic behind the curtain repair attempts meant the first half's performances were drowned out by the screeching feedback. The kids, fingers in ears, watched wide-eyed as the juggler dropped hoops, the dogs refused point blank to stand on their hind legs (despite testicular "motivation"...I kid you not) and Heidi the "sure-footed mountain goat", tottered off her bar stool.
It was frankly, hilarious.
Despite being the most pathetic and unprofessional excuse for entertainment since Eldorado, you had to give them 10/10 for effort. As we emerged from the tarpaulin I looked down at my skipping daughter. Grinning like a lunatic she tugged my arm,
"Das war so brilliant. The bestest thing in the whole vide vorld."
Sometimes we really need to stop being so damn grown up.