Friday, 16 May 2014

Chapter 3 - Good Friends Don't Let You Do Stupid Things Alone

"When the pill the doctor gave you turns your cold to the grippe.
When a stitch to save nine others comes apart with a rip.
When the rats invade your attic and start leaving you ship.
Follow my tip, come away on a trip."
Join the Circus, Barnum the Musical

You couldn’t make this up, you know.  A few weeks after our afternoon at circus school, I was having one of those days. Knee-deep in children, brownies burning, saucepans protesting, arguments escalating, I just reached boiling point.  I sat my two year old down at the kitchen table with some colouring pencils and a wadge of paper, sent my daughter and her friend up to the loft to play, my son off to his room to do his homework, made myself a cup of tea, picked up the phone and slumped onto the sofa.  I could have called a sister, or phoned a friend, but found myself dialling the National Centre for Circus Arts instead.  

I made small talk about courses with the girl on the other end of the line.  I was looking for a little breath of fresh air, and instead got a whirlwind:  "Oh, you’re in luck! Tomorrow enrollment opens for next term, booking lines opens at 10am.  Don’t bother phoning, though, you’ll never get through.  Book on-line, places for aerial skills go especially quickly, in a matter of hours, so you’ll need to be quick off the mark."  

No, no, I nearly protested.  I'm not really serious. "That's great, thanks." I said, and hung up.

Then that small voice piped up, well why not? You can't ignore an opportunity that falls in your lap like this.  It's now or never.  So this time I did phone a friend.  Fancy going back to circus school? I was asking someone who has zero time, four children and countless projects on the go. Sure, she said.  And that was that. I signed up for beginners aerial skills and Anne for acrobalance.

That's the course description, you understand, we had no idea really what to expect ...

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