A very near and dear friend of my called me see what I was up to and "if I wanted to do something." Doing "something" usually entails that I meet him up at a certain local coffee shop that's 24hrs that hardly anyone knows about (and, I'd tell you what that place is, but I like that nobody knows about it. So, there.) and we talk aimlessly and pointlessly until we both tire ourselves despite the copious amounts of caffeine we've just drunk. It was what I had planned to do as normal until shortly after getting off the phone with him to get ready, the news reports presented a fine piece of media tidbit.
At 11:30 pm, The Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus were coming into town and the elephants would be let out for a walk over near Bolm and Springdale. Your plans change considerably when you are provided with such wonderful information.
What makes life interesting sometimes is when you make plans and you force friends to just go along with it without telling them what they are in store for. It tests their loyalty to you, and it provides you with telling information about what your friends think of you and the type of stuff you're willing to subject others to as they try to figure out what the hell you're up to.
Needless to say, I didn't tell my friend Dave that we were going to see elephants.
He went through a round of guesses and I believe he truly considered that we were about the embark on an adventure that would lead to both of our arrests. Unfortunately, he somehow managed to guess what we were about to do at the last minute. This became a disappointment for both him and me...because compared to the excitement of being apprehended, seeing elephants get off a stupid freight train sound pale in comparison.
But we went anyway, and you know what? When you see live elephants...freaking huge as life pachyderms...get off a train and politely hold each others "hands" waiting for their next destination as if waiting casually for a bus, it's pretty damn amazing. And shortly thereafter, I stood there in complete awe of these massive beautiful creature as I turned 29 years old.
Best birthday present to myself ever.