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A Cinderella Story

Posted by on May 27, 2012

Once upon a time there lived a girl (or a guy) who was unhappy, felt oppressed, poor, not good enough, fat, ugly, born of the wrong parents, helpless or just melancholy.

The fairy tale version of this character is visited by their fairy god mother, dressed in a Red Carpet haute de couture designer outfit and swept away in a horse-drawn carriage to be saved by her Prince Charming.

The message is clear that if we feel unhappy like our archetypical character, someday we will be rescued and live happily ever after.   It is as if we are waiting for our Fairy God Mother to bring the carriage to us rather than create the carriage to take us to the ball ourselves.

Last night I met Arly Barton who was the original ‘Corn Girl” selling sweet corn outside her home in Southern California.  Not unlike our fairy tale heroine.  As many young girls, Arly loved horses.  She grew up and never lost her love of horses and even began collecting “carriages”.   One day she had an idea, what if she could combine her love of horses and carriages into a business?  But how would she do this and how would she get the money to follow her dream?

Her first choice as Fairy God Mother was the Bank of America.  After not one but two bank executives laughed at her idea and delivered the bad news that President Ford had frozen all “small business loans”, she returned to her family in disappointment.  Her second hope was that her husband would be her Prince Charming.  Instead he introduced her to her Evil Stepmother “cold calling”.  Her first encounter with this Evil Stepmother was cursing, swearing and being thrown out into the street.  As she slinked home, her body began to rebel and her heart was defibrillating, literally.  She was so scared her heart actually began to attack her.   Her young son was so worried; he carved a heart onto a piece of wood to signify his mom’s heart.  This was her point of no return.

I asked Arly what gave her the strength and courage to follow her dream.  She replied:  I prayed and asked God why would the desire be placed in my heart to follow this dream if I were not to do it?  The answer came back:  I am with you always.  This was all she needed to know.

Arly went on to make her cold calls, build a million dollar business, have her Cinderella carriages in 10 Rose Parades, carry famous grand Marshalls in parades around the country, seat thousands of brides on their Cinderella Day and even have one of her carriages star in Days of Our Lives.

Two of the descents of the Lone Ranger’s horse Silver were her trusted carriage pullers for over 30 years.

It seems only fitting that we say “Hi Yo” Arly who created her own Cinderella Story with a Cinderella Carriage playing the role of her Fairy Godmother.

 What is your fairy tale?

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