Sunday, September 20, 2009

Pirates Arrrrrrrr!

Arrrrrrr! I heard it again and again at the Tall Ships Festival in Dana Point. Young and old alike. Kids with plastic swords and eye patches. Dad's acting like kids Arrrrrrring with their children. Unsuspecting demure ladies blushing when caught Arrrrrrring by a stranger who returned their Arrrrrrr with a grin (that stranger would be me!). But that was part of what made the day so much fun in Dana Point - Pirates! They were everywhere delighting kids and adults alike, including me. Their costumes were so intricate and the makeup (for those who wore it) was incredible. One would have thought he had just walked onto the set of a Pirates of the Caribbean movie. With the tall ships as a back drop, the pirates fit in perfectly.

Some pirates had come from Pirate's Dinner Adventure in Buena Park while others simply enjoyed being at the festival in costume. There's something about putting on a costume that brings out the kid in everyone. We do and say things we would never do and say otherwise. It's license for adults to play legitimately without being thought of as being silly. And it's fun for those who get to hang out with them and partake in a bit of silliness that takes us back to our childhoods.

Most of the pirates had their acts down perfectly. On cue they would put on the pirate face - lift the chin, squint one eye almost shut, and look like a scallywag. And every other person moving along an impossibly crowded walkway wanted to stop and have a picture taken with each pirate. I can't blame them, of course, but I was more concerned with taking photos than being in the photos. The cutest photos, of course, were the children who had dressed up in their own pirate costumes and stood with twinkling eyes with their grown up counterparts.

So I saved the best for last. I think it's possibly the cutest little pirate I've ever seen. I was walking through the tent area when I saw a great looking pirate. After snapping a photo, he said, "Look down." I looked down, and inside a leather pouch tied to his waist sash was a beautiful blond rat with a tiny pink nose and beady black eyes. I'm used to handling pet rats, since I know several teachers who keep them as classroom pets. They have wonderful personalities and are quite wonderful to hold. Their little noses and wiskers tickle when they nuzzle into your hand.

I asked the pirate if he would take him out of the pouch so I could take a photo of the cute little guy. "Would you like to see him in his pirate hat?" Of course I would!!! "YES!" I said almost too enthusiatically and he proceded to pull out the tiniest little pirate hat you've ever seen. On it went and I snapped away. Here's a photo of the littlest pirate. Too cute!

Come back again and read about about the privateers and Neptune - yes, he was there too - in my next blog entry. In the meantime you can check out all my pirate photos on my website elizabethheathphotography. Don't forget to sign my guestbook while you're there.

Now go forth and make it a day to have some fun and be a kid again!

Elizabeth - Arrrrrrr!

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