Saturday, November 19, 2011

"Fire Eating --and MORE!"

Will the fire eater
We loved the fire eater/breather. A person who eats and breathes fire should be scary, right? But William Darke, despite his ominous name, had a very kind face and a wonderful smile, like he was always trying to keep from laughing. Tall and thin, with a nearly 3-foot-long graying pony-tail and the fluid movements of a dancer, he mesmerized us with a glass ball he rolled from hand to hand as he explained to us what we would be seeing when he really got started.

He made us laugh, then he amazed us, then his wife amazed us. He played with fire, swallowed fire, then he breathed out a huge ball of fire! As if that wasn't enough, his lovely wife Kime climbed into a box, and he stuck blades into the box, and the blades came out of the bottom of the box!

He said it wasn't magic or a trick, just a woman with an unusual ability to twist herself up around all the blades. After inserting the blades, he invited the audience to look at her through special viewing ports in the box -- to show she was still all in one piece, I guess.

One of his parting comments to the crowd (along with "kids, don't try this at home -- do it at a friend's house") was this: "do something kind for someone every day, even if it's just opening a door or making someone smile".

As an incredibly cute and sweet yellow lab, I of course make people smile without even trying; but the humans (aka mom and dad) have to put forth some effort. And it's not always easy to be nice to people when you're an over-worked, stressed-out human that feels crummy. But the humans listened to what the fire eater said and took it to heart.

Dad was the last in the line of people to look at Kime twisted up in the box, so the fire eater asked if dad would help remove the blades. Dad was happy to assist (did I mention that the fire eater pulled out Kime's dress when inserting the last blade?).  After the blade removal and box opening, Kime untwisted herself and climbed out of the box looking just as dazzling and beautiful as she had when she climbed in (no slices taken out of her body and no missing limbs) -- although less clothed (she was wearing a bikini-like costume).

Once Kime was out, the fire eater came over to say hello and to pet me. He was very impressed that I had calmly watched while he cracked whips, blew a conch horn, ate fire, then breathed out a huge fireball.  He rubbed my tummy and introduced himself to us, and then Kime came over to pet me, and they asked if I slept in the bed with mom and dad, and they said their dog likes to sleep under the covers.

They asked if I'd had a coconut yet and mom said no but she was looking for one for me. They said their dog loved coconuts and they lived at the other end of Duval Street and their trees had the best and sweetest coconuts. They asked where we were staying and Kime gave mom their phone number and address and told her to call if we walked down that way. Mom thanked them but didn't think she would call, although she wanted to, because she didn't like to impose or bother people and she's really kind of shy.

We headed off to find dinner, feeling like we had just met a couple of movie stars or rock stars. We felt kind of honored that they had introduced themselves and talked to us.  I think we were a little starstruck, Kime was so sweet and beautiful -- I think she even sparkled -- and Will was just so amazing.

Later that night when we got back to the hotel, there was a message for mom and dad from the front desk clerk: "Mr. and Mrs. Darke from Mallory Square brought your dog a coconut. We have it at the front desk for you."

It was a simple act of kindness, but we thought it was the nicest thing ever. They went out of their way to bring me a coconut, because their dog loves coconuts and they thought I would too.

Mom says this is the kind of thing that happens in Key West, and people like Will and Kime are part of what makes Key West such a special and magical place. She says Key West has changed a lot in the past 25 years, but that part of it hasn't changed.

The next day, mom made a card for them (she painted the front of the card with colorful starfish and paw prints) and wrote in it a thank you note, and inserted one of my therapy dog calling cards. We went to Sunset again the next day, and she gave the card to Will and thanked him and told him how much they enjoyed talking to him and Kime. Later, mom and dad noticed that Will was reading the card and smiling.

Our amazing trip came to an end, and we headed home and back to our everyday lives. But a day hasn't gone by that we haven't thought of our new friends Will the fire eater and Kime the contortionist and smiled about the surprise coconut delivery.

And the humans have been trying to smile at people more, and finding opportunities to do nice things for other people. Because they think of Will and Kime and smile.

If everyone does something nice for someone every day, the little nice things will really add up! "Key West moments", as mom calls them, can happen anywhere, and Key West kindness can be contagious. We've definitely become infected.

My new friend Will the fire eater/breather, breathing out a fireball (it only looks like he's setting himself on fire)

No comments:

Post a Comment