I do not seem to be doing very well on either the whimsy or the adventures, thus far. However, it *is* only the second day of this blog’s existence, so I’ll be easy on myself.
I briefly considered discussing how yesterday I was brandishing a chainsaw, and transported a tree up the access path cut along a quarter-mile of the cliffside on which we live, and there was mud, blood, and an overwhelming amount of testosterone. I also considered writing about how today, in contrast, I am lounging in a cocktail dress and my grandmother’s fox-fur because I am too damned sore to do anything else. Instead, I am going to write about camels.
About a year ago, Ex-Husband and I got back in touch with one another – we hadn’t spoken for more than a year. I had just started a new frenzy for new experiences, and for little souvenirs designed to lift one’s spirits. Ex-Husband showed up, made me dinner (he’s a chef), and took me to a local winter attraction we have in Tacoma, Zoolights – essentially, the local zoo is converted into a walk-through cavalcade of animal-themed wonder. As it happens, while we were purchasing tickets, I saw a sign.
Not an omen. I meant an actual sign, advertising camel rides. While probably intended for children, they didn’t have an age limit, and I had never ridden a camel before, and damn it, I had a sudden, burning, need to ride one.
Of course, as we made our way towards the camel enclosure, it began to rain. The camel-herder chap led the camels away as we approached the wooden set of stairs, designed for camel ascension. As we wandered off, sharing a clandestine cigarette in the Asian Forest Sanctuary, Ex-Husband promised that we’d try again the next week. We did try, but on this second visit, the camels weren’t even out. I was crushed – no camel ride for me.
In the following months, I experienced a number of wondrous new things, making new friends, picking up new skills and hobbies. Ex-Husband moved to Germany, as planned, and the world kept spinning. All was perfectly ordinary, except that I still had that fervent urge to sit uncomfortably between an undulating pair of humps.
Last August, I was at the Ale House of the local Renaissance Faire, on its last day. After several ciders, and about fifteen minutes before the cannons announced the Faire was closed for the year, a friend of mine pointed something out: Three camels, in an enclosure, tied to a central pole. Five dollars, satisfaction. As my friend shoved a bill into my hand and pushed me towards the bored teenager manning the ride, I felt more alive than I had in ages. While my steed plodded once, slowly, lazily, around the ring, my grin radiated triumph to all who saw: I had finally had my camel ride, and no one could take it away from me.