Saturday, November 22, 2014
Today I thought I'd share a few fun photos from Sarasota, Florida, where the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus had their winter headquarters (established in 1927). It makes sense, since so much of the USA gets hit with harsh winters; why not find a sunny, warm place to relax? The circus folk didn't just sit around eating bonbons and watching soap operas though - they still performed for crowds of fellow snowbirds.
This first photo is neat, I love the group of people on the back of that elephant - you can almost imagine the swaying, slightly bumpy ride that they are experiencing. The word "Gajasala" is Hindi, and means "elephant stable".
In another area, folks gather around to watch all kinds of performers doing their thing. Before I zoom in for a closer look, I am noticing some horses out in that field, grazing happily; presumably these are the same horses that pull the wagons or prance in parades during shows.
Well, looks like just about everybody is here! The strong man, beautiful showgirls, clowns, the lion tamer, an acrobat, and (since there is a low tightrope), even an incognito tightrope walker or two.
Go ahead, reach into the cage and pet the lions! What's the worst that could happen?
Considering that March 17th was a Saturday, crowds are pretty sparse - but then again, there are plenty of jackets, sweaters, and babushkas, so maybe it was chilly by Florida standards. The elephants don't seem to mind. I wish I had scanned the photo of the baby elephant who could fly (I think I can see a little mouse in his cap), but I forgot to.
I hope you have enjoyed your visit to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey winter headquarters!