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The circus has come to town with all its glitz, glory, and tradition.


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Ladies and gentlemen, children of all ages, step right up and witness the final bow to what was once the greatest ride on Earth! The Circus Train! Not only have railro proven well-suited for commuters and freight, but for over years they have also been known to ease the transportation of massive animals and heavy equipment often for your entertainment. During the s, there were approximately 30 animal circuses touring Women seeking casual sex Ramseur eastern United States. These shows traveled nightly by wagon through muddied country ro.

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The caravan was massive, carrying scores of animals, performers, circus staff, and—on one journey, at least—a great photographer. His name was Loomis Dean, a Ringling Bros. The photos are a vivid reminder of what was most assuredly a one-of-a-kind trip, as is the one-of-a-kind of it that Dean wrote with Ernie Anderson for Sarasota Magazine in An edited version of the piece follows. For most of every year, the 1, humans who comprised the cast and crew of the Ringling Bros.

It was a hard-grinding life. As for the job sites themselves, they were sheltered by canvases that offered scant protection from rainstorms, sleet and Lonely lady searching erotic masage winds. Crises seemed to arise at every moment—wild animals on the ram, trapeze accidents, lost children, sick elephants, pickpockets, and even, on occasion, deaths.

Circus train

Every night, we circus Naughty wife seeking sex Minneapolis St Paul left the show grounds and made our way, still drenched in adrenaline, to the railroad yards. There was usually an atmosphere of exhilaration—that and a sense of relief that the evening had not ended with someone being killed, maimed or arrested.

We traveled by fourth-class freight, which meant that all regularly scheduled trains took precedence, which meant that no one was ever sure when the circus train would depart. Its hundred cars were broken into four sections, each of which often left an hour or more apart.

Still, for many Singles in oxford was home, or a kind of home, anyway. The privacy was minimal, and the ambiance created by this conglomeration of athletes and beauties and adventurers and freaks and con merchants often resembled a pressure cooker on a slow flame. There were some bizarre happenings, to be sure, most of which occurred in the wee hours Akron sex guide the vast darkness of the railroad yards.

Invariably, the yards were surrounded by an assortment of seedy bars and hotels.

The air was electric, and the circus folk attracted a motley assortment of followers in every town where they stopped. There were fantastic things to be seen on those nights, and I saw them all. The dwarfs commanded the most attention, and not only from the gawkers.

Among railroad bar prostitutes—flocks of whom congregated in the railyard and were there to greet the trains on arrival—it was generally assumed that dwarfs, while small of stature, were otherwise enormously endowed, and every now and then I saw a dwarf coax one of these ladies of the evening into a tryst in a nearby phone booth. Ku Ku the Bird Girl was also popular in the railroad bars. A sideshow attraction, she had a shaved head the size of a grapefruit which she adorned with a single feather. Ku Ku seemed to have a limitless Ringling brothers barnum and bailey circus train for alcohol.

Built Botticelli fashion, with a prominent posterior and tiny legs, she wore enormous bird claws on her 45 years old lady in the show. It was almost surreal.

Love always seemed on the mind of circus folk, although given the cramped quarters, liaisons often took place in lumberyards, warehouses, or even, in extremis, ditches. For all the licentiousness of these scenes, however, I was surprised to discover that the circus had a rigid sexual caste system What does cool off mean in a relationship made certain relationships taboo. At the lowest level were the casual laborers, most of whom were winos who ed the show for a few days or weeks and then disappeared into the void.

One level up were the workingmen—the roustabouts and the canvasbacks. Then Peterborough ontario dating sites were the wranglers and grooms who took care of the 1, animals on the train.

Circus tales

Above them were the sideshow freaks, above them were the propmen and riggers, and above them were the ushers and band members. The young showgirls were next up the ladder, and one rung higher still were the monied aristocracy, aka the ticket sellers.

The Brahmins were the featured acts, the executives, and of course, the stars. 0nline dating sites sea lions, meanwhile, were always just one car away, traveling in a special tank Firth rigged atop a flatcar. The car always had a freezer full of vast quantities of fish for the sea lions, which Firth always seemed to be defrosting and feeding to his brood.

The circus train

Ringling Bros. Indeed, there was far more of it among hustling ticket buyers, who often pretended to be shortchanged and then raised a beef.

In the end, sellers usually paid off the interlopers, just to get rid of the nuisance. She, too, found her way Sideline girl thailand the railroad bars, usually the best booth in the t, where she held court like a princess. Nobody could possibly do that, I thought. I had Kinross pussy swinging thoughts about the aerialist as well, as did every other male in the audience, I imagine. The circus train carried some 1, people, from showgirls to clowns, along with a thousand animals.

Keeping Ringling brothers barnum and bailey circus train was impossible on the circus train, which is how I heard that the aerialist was steadily but irregularly involved with one of the advance press agents, irregularly because he caught up with her no more than once a week. In consequence, Fuckbuddies newcastle.

Swinging. eyes roamed, and sometimes they found a sharp young ticket seller or ruggedly handsome animal trainer, either of whom might find himself the lucky winner of a post-midnight rendezvous on the train. I myself drifted across her sightlines night after night, dreaming of exchanging my humble berth for an idyll in her stateroom, if only for one magical night.

Alas, she never seemed to see me.

Missing the train was an unimaginable calamity. A few ticket sellers rode in The Squadron, too.

It was their job to send the word out that the circus was coming to town. The train would leave with or without you, so there was always a mad scramble to get on board. The lowest orders of the circus were the laborers. They arrived in the fourth section of the train crammed into cars two-to-a-bunk in tiers three bunks high.

Terrible, unimaginable things happened in those cars, everything from fights to killings. In the latter case, the crew would just toss the corpse onto the tracks, where it would likely Signs of a happy healthy relationship run over by a freight train or two before being discovered. Father Eslander and altar boys from St. Martha's blessed the train every year as it left on tour.

For a young fellow like me, the circus train was never less than exciting, and the places it took me were always fascinating. One day, I was sitting with an old circus hand as we passed some How to smoke coke on foil the most beautiful country in America. It was rich farmland, and I saw a picture-book farmhouse in a grove of trees surrounded by snow-covered peaks.

There was a white Breaking up with your partner fence all around the place, and also a spic-and-span front porch on which a farmer and his wife sat in rocking chairs, both wearing their Sunday best. It was a pastoral scene of peace and beauty worthy of a master painter. The word was circus slang for imbecilic hayseeds. Still, I took the point. Were those prosperous farmers, I wondered, any happier than this nomad?

Practicing at the Winter Headquarters in Sarasota. Filed under.

A history of the ringling circus train

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