So there we were, staring into predators’ eyes, on their turf, the intruders. A fierce roar… OMG…. what was I thinking…. facing a lion. I had not started the day with this plan. When did things go so wrong?
Sunday began with a couple of hours in at work whilst the darling daughter amazed at the Chocolate Factory I work in. She didnt seem too disappointed, although I knew she has always pictured WiIly Wonka’s fantabulous abode as my place of work – IF ONLY, an Oompa Loompa or 2 to help would be a fine thing! After we finished we headed off to lunch then excitedly made our way to the afternoon’s entertainment – Stardust Circus. I have to admit, Bethie Boop was the excited one. I was a little anxious. Even though my grandmother had toured for over a decade as a circus performer with Bertam Mills Circus in the UK, I was no longer a fan. At 19, I had been horrifed to see how circus animals were kept as a local circus. I am not a bleeding heart animal activist, but animals need space and the resources to exhibit some natural attributes. Hobbled camels and elephants had torn apart my family allegiances.
Those days are long gone and better understanding of animals needs, associated Codes Of Practice and regualr RSPCA audits means circus animals have a much improved life. After 2 years of pleading from Ms Bethie Boop, I relented from my ban and we made the booking.
The entertainment was SUPERB. Naughty but hilarious clowns, aerial acts (youngest was 7!!!!) which had our hearts in our throats, ponies, lions, goats, pigs, moneys and dogs. Bethie Boop walked away saying her stomach hurt from laughing so much. A great sign. Then I saw another great sign, and that leads back to the jeopardy that started this blog….
So there we were…. face to face with no safety from a vicious killer. To have put us here deliberately! I am begining to think it wasnt such a great idea. The king of the jungle eyed me (well, it was the Queen actually, in fact, more like a princess), but still, the fangs were real.
We were cornered. She pounced, jaws agape, glistening teeth grazed my arm…. whilst her sister came at us from the side – a coordinated attack. A sandpapery tongue started licking. AWWWWWWWWWESOMMMMMMME. 2 overgrown kittens were bouncing around us, playing and cuddling, and just generally acting very cute as only babies of furry species can.
Ms Bethie Boop was utterly under their spell and I suspect was planning how to surreptiously sneak one if not both out in my handbag. So warm, so endering, so soul charging! A dream come true – tick that off the old bucket list! We have cuddled lions! Life is awesome today.