This is my first auto topic post. Unlike many of the auto topic suggestions that pop up, this one I liked. If money was not a consideration, name your top three dream jobs. Money wouldn’t be a consideration as I’m sure most anything would pay more than my current avocation of itinerant petsitter.
Perhaps, a different consideration to ignore would be age or physical decrepitude as my choices would be a better fit for someone just entering the workforce or at the very least, who has not yet passed the half century mark.
First up – trapeze artist. This might seem a surprising choice for anyone who knows me well as I do have a tiny fear of heights. My fear isn’t so much of being up high, but of falling from a great height. I have those dreams where you feel like you’re falling and suddenly wake up with your heart pounding in your chest. Yeah, I have no desire to jump out of an airplane or go rock climbing, but trapeze artist – I could do that. Even though those seconds between letting go of the bar and grabbing ahold of the catcher’s hands would be what some might think of as falling, I would think of as flying.
Whenever I went to the circus as a child, I was most in awe of the trapeze artists. Yes, the girls on the horses or elephants were cool, and the lion tamer was brave, but the trapeze artists were flying through the air defying gravity. I would go home and play on the swings and dream of performing in the circus. I still like to swing – on swings not the other kind of swinging. And I still dream of flying on the trapeze.
Second – Mermaid. This is indeed a real job, though it is a very small workforce. Since 1947, mermaids have lived and worked in Weeki Wachee Springs. The park is about 30 miles from where I live. As a kid, we went to see the mermaid show at Weeki Wachee Springs and I was enthralled. I always thought that would be a very cool job to have. Mermaids still perform at the Springs. I imagine a whole new generation of little girls go to the shows today and dream of one day being a mermaid.
Third – Jockey. I seriously considered becoming a jockey when I was about 18. There were very few female jockeys at the time. I had always loved horses and had ridden often as a kid. The idea of being astride a horse galloping down the homestretch was exciting. I never thought of the job as particularly dangerous and yet it is one of the more dangerous jobs out there. Laura Hillenbrand’s book, Seabiscuit: An American Legend, told of the dangers of the sport. Yet as I was reading the book, I didn’t dwell on those dangers, instead I kept thinking, “How amazing it must feel to be on a thoroughbred that is galloping around a track!”
I chose college over being a jockey, but I still get those twinges of envy when I watch the Triple Crown races and see the jockeys maneuver their mounts into the starting gates. There are those tense few seconds before the gates spring open and the horses leap out onto the track. Yes, that would be an amazing feeling. Well, maybe in my next life, though I was hoping to be taller, which would eliminate jockey as a career choice. That still leaves trapeze artist or mermaid!