When the Whirling Dervishes come to town you are going to see that shit. At least I am. I think it is interesting to witness the practice of connecting to the oneness of all things and the eternal godliness of the universe. Devotion through meditative gestures and excessive efforts seems like a path towards something. The mystical journey of truth is not going to be found on my Facebook feed that is for sure. Even though one seems slightly more entertaining than the other – perpetual bliss and enlightenment vs. a funny video with Jimmy Fallon lip-synching. Tough call.
Of course I brought The Munch with me, because if I am going to transcend space and time, so should she. We got to the front desk and I handed the woman a check as my mandatory donation for the event.
Lady: “Is that what your are planning on using for your signature?”
Toni: “Excuse me?”
Lady: “That’s the signature you are actually using for this check?”
Toni: “Ummm yup. That’s my signature. I guess I should have been a doctor?”
Lady: “Or paid more attention in school.”
Things were off to a great start. I wasn’t exactly sure of the scene upstairs, but I realized pretty quick when greeted with a bunch of “shhhhhhhh’s” that my friend Miriam and I had been talking too loud on our way up. Everyone was seated in a circle around an empty space and we found our way next to my friend Sarah.
The Munch was the only child in a five-mile radius and all I could do was pray that she behaved herself. You don’t want to be that person that everyone resents because they brought their kid. But at the same time, I think kids should be more integrated into adult situations. If they are always excluded from things that aren’t specifically kid-friendly then how will they ever know your interests? If I didn’t bring The Munch with me to things I liked then she would assume I actually think going down a 3 foot slide is exciting.
The room was very quiet, then the music started to play. It was subtle, and understated. A flute flittered in the background and The Munch let out this really loud noise/yawn/release that almost perfectly mimicked the pitch of the instrument – just 8 volume decimals louder.
The Whirling Dervishes came in and started… you guessed it… whirling. Just going around and around and around themselves in circles. A man who worked at the museum came over because he was concerned The Munch was sitting on my lap.
Man: “Does she need her own chair?”
Toni: “No she is fine. Thank you.”
Man: “Are you sure?”
Toni: “Yes thank you.”
The man then walked back to where he was standing, and The Munch decided I was wrong.
Munch: “Mamma, I need my own chair.”
Toni: “No Munch you are fine.”
Munch: “No I need my own chair.”
Toni: “Munch you are good. Just sit on my lap.”
Munch: “I am going to go ask that man for a chair.”
She then slithered off my lap to ask the man for a chair. Now the Munch is wise enough to know to whisper at events like these, but the man she was talking to was old, and kind of deaf. He couldn’t hear what she was saying. She kept whispering “I need a chair” and he kept pointing to his ear. She would then whisper “ear” because she assumed he was testing her knowledge of body parts, and things got all confusing.
So I got her a chair and showed her that she could sit on it and stop harassing that man. As the Whirling Dervishes spun around and around and around, Munch started fidgeting on her precious chair.
Munch: “Mamma… I am stuck.”
She had some how wedged herself into that gap between the seat of the chair and the back of the chair. Either way I tried to pull her out seemed geometrically impossible. It was like extracting a flat screen TV out of a bagel.
Toni: “Jesus Munch. Which way did you go in? Head first or feet first?”
Munch: “Umm, my bum.”
I barely managed to stuff her butt back through the tight space and she was free. Then The Munch just started walking over to the man who worked at the museum to show him how she could twirl, what the inside of her mouth looked like, her new party shoes and would then remove the shoulder straps of her dress seductively while he desperately tried to pursued her to pull them back up.
Munch then got hungry, and thank goddess Miriam had a Lara bar. Of course she had to pee at one point, and then almost insisted that I “talk loud” because her baby needed to “wake up and not be so lazy.” When the Dervishes stoped whirling the room was silent expect for a loud whisper saying “I don’t want to go Mamma. I want to stay here.”
I wasn’t sure if she was a welcome addition to the event, or some old hippies were going to stone me. But luckily when people started talking they said how well behaved she was, and the man who worked at the museum called her delightful. It’s a good think old people don’t see or hear that great.