On my recent birthday I was presented with this incredible, hand-carved 3- ring circus. It was gifted to me by a wonderful young man, whom I call Grandson.

Tonto arrived at the house carrying a large box, and said “I’m going out to bring in a couple more boxes, read this while I get them; it was a letter of authenticity from the artist which began:

Dear New Circus Owner:

Welcome to the wonderful world of the circus. You, in some small way, are now part of an American tradition which had its start in Philadelphia in 1793 which George Washington attended. Your circle travels in one large truck which when unpacked and set up, you will have: the ring/trapeze/ horse/elephant/ringmaster/clown/Acrobats…

I hope you enjoy your circus. I certainly enjoyed building it as did my wife FiFi who painted it. Be happy, stay well and perhaps we will meet someday on a real circus lot”.

                                                                                                               Fred Reed “The Ringmaster”.

While assembling it he told me how he came to get it. His neighbor, who acquired it at a charity auction years ago, was downsizing and the piece was just too big to move. Tonto took one look at it and said “I knew it had your name on it; several years ago I became a part of your family circus, and I want to say thank you for welcoming me into it”…touched me deeply.

I started getting queasy though immediately recognizing that I would never be able to put it together again or fit it back in the truck. This meant finding a place where I could leave this extraordinary work of art on permanent display. We found a perfect place next to the fireplace in the living room and below the shelves holding my Native American carving collection.

I started playing with them and I still am. When I downsize I’m going to pass it along to a new circus owner along with Fred’s letter (to which I might add these words).

“I hope this extraordinary piece brings you as much joy as it has to me. It is a continual reminder that laughter, humor and letting the child within get out to play is how we make it through the circus of life (and it’s getting me through the Trump Circus too).

Expand your family, make new relationships, and remember there is nothing we face that isn’t made better by laughter.

Play in your circus, bring on the clowns.