See that picture up there? That’s my friend Phyllis checking something off of her bucket list. I unfortunately was not there to see her do it, but I’m happy for her and proud of her nonetheless. And also excited that she didn’t have to do it by traveling to Egypt or the Middle East. She was able to do it right here in my hometown of Jocotepec.
A couple of times a year, the circus comes to town. I’ve not yet been to one because I’m just not crazy about them, but I do love to see what will appear here in Joco when the animals arrive. A few years ago, when my son, Steve, came down to visit, I was on my way to the airport to pick him up when suddenly this appeared through my driver’s side window as I came into Joco.
And then I saw this:
I had to laugh. It’s things like this that you don’t see much in the United States. The circuses there are huge and the animals are pretty much hidden. When Steve and I were returning from the airport, we had to pass this spot again and the camels were still out there. I told him to glance out to the right and tell me what he saw.
“Holy crap,” he said, “you have camels down here???”
I wish I had had my camera with me when I pulled up behind a pickup towing a trailer one day in Ajijic not long after I arrived here. The driver of the pickup seemed to be carrying a load of hay. At least that’s the color I saw until a LION stood up in the trailer and either yawned at me or decided to try to eat my truck! Either way, I almost freaked out!
I mean, who the hell takes a lion for a ride in a trailer behind a pickup?? Well, the answer is, the folks who run the local circuses. But I sure didn’t know that then. Their publicity people drive through and around our pueblos when they are here in pickups with speakers on the top of the cab. And it is common to see a few animals in the back of the pickup with their heads up there next to the speakers, seemingly enjoying their ride around town.
Now I’m kind of used to seeing llamas riding around in the back of trucks, either with their chins propped up on the cab roof or nestled down in the bed. But that doesn’t mean that it still doesn’t thrill me just a bit.
When I first considered moving to Mexico, I spent a week in a little village in Baja California Sur called Mulege. During the week that I was there, apparently they were having a horse parade of some sort. So almost every time I drove into el centro from my lodging, I saw horses in the back of pickups.
Nothing really unusual about that; right? Except that these horses were literally in the back of pickups, not in trailers drawn by pickups. And as far as I could tell, they weren’t really restrained by anything. They were just riding around in the back of Nissan short-bed pickups like mine. And apparently having a mighty fine time.
On that same trip, I came upon a do-it-yourself car wash in Mulege and I was astounded t0 see the horse’s owner giving his horse a wash! The horse seemed to be really enjoying the power washer loaded with soap that his owner was giving him and I have to admit that the horse was beautiful and glistening in the sun.
And, yes, the next time the circus comes to town, I’ll probably go!