Always A Circus

For our first wedding anniversary Will and I went to a bed and breakfast, complete with alpaca farm, in New Jersey. For our second anniversary we went to a bed and breakfast, complete with alpaca farm, in Maine. For our third anniversary, we went to Costco.

It did not have an alpaca farm.

It wasn’t all bad–since we went on a weekday morning there were no lines at the food sample carts, so I didn’t have to stab any old ladies with a toothpick to get my free molecule of microwaved chicken. Plus, I got to buy a box of oatmeal that’s bigger than my torso. And then later we went out for a fancy dinner, which was lovely, and we’re going camping this weekend going to make a couch cushion fort in the living room and watch the new Arrested Development and pretend we’re camping this weekend.

Anyway, Will, being a perceptive kind of guy, noticed our lack of plans for the actual day of our anniversary and said, “Hey, why don’t you use that gift certificate for trapeze lessons that I gave you two years ago?” (Sentences like this are uttered in our house all the time.) I said that was a great idea. He said he’d bring the camera with the zoom lens. A flailing good time was about to be had.

So off we went to Jordan’s Furniture. (Side note for those of you who do not live in New England: Jordan’s is a furniture store owned by guys who think that furniture shopping should be THE FUNNEST THING EVER, and thus have packed their stores with things like IMAX movie theaters, motion simulator rides, jelly bean stores, and trapeze schools. No, I’m not kidding.) After a quick and disturbingly vague rundown about all of the aerial acrobatics we’d be attempting, the instructors strapped us into our safety harnesses, chalked up our hands, and threw us off a ledge.


And that’s when I learned something very important about myself: I am not particularly talented at the art of trapeze. The goal was to swing out on the bar, then pull my legs up, hook them over the bar, and swing by my knees–and while I’m proud to say that I did eventually accomplish this, it took a good long while and I was basically a quivering, fuzzy-haired mess by the time it all went down. I blame 1) my stubby little arms, which did not provide adequate room for me to shove the rest of my body through, and 2) my freakishly small hands, which were able to grip the bar with all the strength and dexterity of a drunken toddler.

Still, I did it.


But such grace and aerial poetry cannot be achieved without a certain amount of pain. Two days later, I feel like I’ve been beaten senseless by a band of vengeful chimpanzees for daring to invade their treetop turf. Everything hurts–shoulders, neck, legs, abs, a few muscles that I’m pretty sure I grew during the lesson just so that they could ache later on, and my head. (Only because I banged it on a door handle this morning, but still, IT COUNTS). The skin on my palms is in bad shape too, since I had to grip the bar so friggin’ hard with my mutant child paws.

I did have fun, though–or as much fun as one can have while their dreams of joining the circus are crushed in front of their very eyes. I imagine that someone with a lot more athletic ability than I would have fared much better, like the older lady in my class who hopped on up there and was able to do all the tricks right off the bat and shamed us all. (To be fair, she was a former Marine, and she also looked a lot like Meryl Streep, so maybe there were some cyborg shenanigans going on there. A mission to create the ideal human, wherein ideal is defined as having military, acting, and trapeze skills?) But as it was, I did the best I could, and Will took a lot of pictures like a gawking, creepy pervert. Good times.

Don’t worry–I gave Will a fun present too, which I will post about next week. Also coming next week: a big honkin’ announcement! Get excited!



  1. […] Gina Damico (author of Croak, Scorch & the upcoming Rogue).  Gina is another author that I’ve been following for a while, yet I still haven’t managed to read her books! I blame this on myself, and the over-crowded reading schedule I’ve gotten myself into and can’t seem to get out of. But she is so funny, and her posts are all over the place! Check out this one about how she and her husband spent their third wedding anniversary. […]

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