By Henry Homeyer
For the Valley News
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
For me, the circus really is about the animals. Yes, I’ve seen elephants in the African veldt from a safe distance. But there is something special about seeing elephants up close while sitting next to a 6-year-old who has never seen a live one. Grandchildren whose eyes become as big and round as doughnuts. And at the Kelly Miller circus, there was the special allure of sleek tigers lounging and yawning and stretching before the show on a grassy lawn inside a metal enclosure, looking for all the world like tabbies, only much, much bigger.
The tiger trainer seemed to love his big kitties. They sat on tall stools and cavorted around the ring. On request, some jumped over their fellow felines (or as faux-delinquents, crawled under them when asked to jump over). They stood up on their back legs, demonstrating how long a tiger really is. They showed their teeth and acted fierce. But when the handler stooped over and kissed one of the tigers on the head after doing a trick nicely, my heart melted. Once again, I wanted to join the circus.
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