With one giant step from Maleny to Lausanne on the Lake Geneva shoreline, my view of life was changed forever.
Most of the important lessons that I learned came via my asylum seeker family at EVAM Crissier.
Now, sitting back in the land of plenty, it is time to put into practice what I have learned.
Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus on Sunshine Coast
Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus now showing at Eumundi markets every Saturday and Wednesday
Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus - a curious and concise history.
Madame Jo Jo and Professor Roberto chanced upon and revived the centuries old Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus tradition after the passing of Madame Jo Jo’s eccentric, spinster Aunt Rosa in 2010.
Aunt Rosa lived all her eighty nine years high up in the Jura Mountains of south-eastern france, in the village of St Claude. St. Claude, a quaint medieval village, was founded by a group of wandering monks in the late fourth century. Lovingly embraced by the village folk of St Claude but much maligned and mis-understood by her family members, Madame Rosa left all of her worldly possessions to her flamboyant and gypsy lust great-grand niece, Madame Jo Jo.
After attending to the funeral formalities, Madame Jo Jo and Professor Roberto, attended the reading of her Last Will and Testament. It was there that they received the news of Madame Jo Jo’s legacy and received the the giant trunk which contained Madame Rosa’s possessions. Upon opening the trunk they discovered an envelope addressed to ‘My much adored Jo Jo’ and a smaller dust ladened, burgundy and steel reinforced, traveling trunk with the name ‘Flea Circus’, inscribed elegantly on the inside of the lid.
Madame Jo Jo and Professor Roberto read the letter from Aunt Rosa with open-mouthed wonder and delight, gasping at each twist and turn that connected the history of the Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus to their arrival in ST Claude.
It appeared that the flea circus had been the original creation of Madame Rosa’s grandmother, Senorita Rosalina. Senorita Rosalina had lived with her gypsy family behind a large horse arena shed in Jerez del la Frontera in northern Spain. Jerez is the home of the world famous Andalucian dancing horses.
As a small girl Rosalina whiled away her days watching the horse trainers put the horses through their paces. After the trainers would leave each evening, Rosalina would find her way into the horses stalls to feed them apples and tell them stories of her families worldly travels. It was while she was stroking their faces and manes that she made an amazing discovery within the horses coats. Spanish dancing fleas. Over the months, as she befriended the horses and the fleas, she gave the fleas names and taught them tricks.
When her family told her that they would be leaving Spain and taking their caravan home to France, Rosalina wasn’t sad at all. She picked out her ten favourite fleas and made a comfortable home for them in a small, silver jewelry case she had purchased at a market in Madrid. Each night, during the wagon journey to the Jura Mountains, Rosalina would release her fleas onto her families horses and get up early the next day to feed the horses and collect her flea friends for the continuing adventure. Her days were spent marveling at the feats of her fleas as they responded to the new challenges she would assign to them.
Senorita Rosalina began her show biz career in a small square in the centre of St Claude. Using one of her mother’s small bedside tables, covered in a burgundy cloth, she would entertain the children of her village and they would fill her small silver jewelry case with coins. before she was married, Senorita Rosalina travelled throughout the Jura Mountains and Burgundy area of France as well as parts of Switzerland, wowing the villagers at fairs and festivals with the astounding feats of her miniature theatric troupe.
But after her marriage and subsequent nine children, Senorita Rosalina had little energy left for her old life and the amazing and fabulous Flea circus went into storage under her bed in St Claude.
And that is where the the Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus remained until Rosa stumbled upon it in her teens when she was doing some housework for her aging grandmother. She was so excited by the circus in a box that Grandma Rosalina sat her down and told her the whole story from the beginning. She also introduced her to her Spanish dancing flea farm she had bred and maintained from the original Spanish fleas. Rosa spent the next two years training the fleas under her grandmother’s expert tuition.
On her eighteenth birthday, the Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus gave it’s first public performance in over fifty years to a raptured audience that lined up in St Claude’s original town square to get a bird’s eye view of one of the wonders of the world that they had heard the parents and grandparents talk about during those long winter months.
Due to the stringent customs regulations in Australia regarding the importing of Spanish dancing fleas it was necessary for Madame Jo Jo and Professor Rob to cross-breed Aunt Rosa’s remaining pedigree stock with the more common European house flea (Pulex irritans). This cross pedigree flea still retains the rhythmic flexibility of the Spanish dancing flea but it was easily transported via the human body into Australia without customs declaration.
And now, after two years of bonding and training with the latest team of hybrid, Spanish dancing fleas, rigorously following Aunt Rosa’s instructions and routines from the letter of her book, from high up in the Jura Mountains, it is the pleasure of Madame Jo Jo and Professor Roberto to bring to you...
and the simply electrifying
daredevil and daredevilesses of the world renowned
‘Gypsy Carnivale Flea Circus’
the fantastical Spanish dancing fleas...
The beautiful Lucy
The sultry Lola
and the handsome, charming,
athletic and the strongest flea in the world... Barney