He thought he was the cock of the walk, but this overly vain fowl
cries foul when he truly turns vane--i.e. becomes a weathervane.
It's "Half-A-Chick", the curious Portuguese fable about the
consequences of arrogance. One of the curious things about this
story is that the main character is an oddball. Okay, nothing
unusual about that; plenty of stories have leading characters who
are misfits. (Cinderella, The Ugly Duckling, Harry Potter, etc.
etc.) But you'll notice that such characters almost always turn out
to be noble and virtuous despite the way other people ridicule and
mistreat them. In this case, just the opposite happens --
Half-A-Chick has a double-sized ego, and meets his downfall because
This week, we come to you from the heart of the bustling resort
town of Hot Springs, Arkansas. (Technically, it's called Hot Springs National Park
entire city of 35,000 residents plus hordes of tourists is a
national park!) We recorded next to the Visitors' Center, beside
one of the many fountains where you can fill up jugs with 143
degree mineral water that's been brewing for 4000 years before
spouting from the 47 springs around here. We were right there on
"Bathhouse Row" which at one time sported several trendy bath
houses and health spas that were frequented by such notable
visitors as Al Capone. Today, these structures are preserved as
historic buildings, but only one remains in operation as a bath
house-- although other bath houses can be found at some of the
hotels in town. We mourn the Libbey Memorial Physical Club, the
truly unique establishment we luxuriated in on out last trip here.
Nothing else like it in Hot Springs or anywhere. (Read about our
previous visit to the
At our performance at the Garland County Library, we met another
boy named Zephyr! Moreover, his parents are performers too. That
night, we watched their hilarious oom-pah rendition of various
American pop songs and originals at the Brauhaus German restaurant.
Zach and Cheryl, who moved here from Seattle, call themselves The
they have quite a memorable sound!
After Hot Springs, we wrapped up our tour of Arkansas with an
experience that can be duplicated nownere else in the world: we
went digging for diamonds in the diamond fields
Murfreesboro. We didn't find any of the precious gems (an average
of about 2 per day are found there - infact a big one was
found by a 13 year old
not too long ago) but we had a great
time playing in the mud!
Dennis (the Spark), Kimberly (the Water) and Zephyr (Half-A-Chick)