Thursday, June 5, 2003

Went to the zoo today. We were there last summer, once, and I swear I don't remember it being as big as it is. Did it grow or did I shrink? Undoubtedly the former.

Joseph liked most of it (last year, he was barely one and not really into it), especially the monkeys and the kangaroos, both of whom, as it happened, had babies. The Capuchin monkeys (of course he would like them, his middle name being Bernard after Venerable Solanus Casey and all...how's that for complicated?), living in the middle of an island surrounded by a moat, had a baby they carried around on their backs, one of the adults reaching back and arm to steady the baby, just like any of us would. I hate to tell you, though, that since the water in the moat also glistened with dozens of shiny pennies and nickels, Joseph, clearly not imitating his patron here, was almost as fascinated by that sight: "Money!Money!"

The kangaroos had babies, er, Joeys, er whatever - two of them carried about in pouches, which is the first time I'd ever seen that. And we saw prairie dogs and snakes and fed ducks and nasty geese (why does any zoo have geese? They are such despicable animals) and saw a very nice sea lion display with one of the happy, shiny creatures, lolling under a waterfall, head under the water, mouth open. I was jealous.

I decided to go ahead and buy a family membership, seeing as Joseph enjoyed himself, there's a playground nearby and picnic tables on the lawn outside the gate. Besides the fact that the membership gets us free admission to our own zoo, we can also get in free to various other zoos in places we frequent, like Knoxville. As for here in "Fotewayne," as Joseph as begun to say, it will be good for a couple of hours of good, hard running on sunny summer mornings. We were probably the only family there with a toddler and without a stroller. People looked at me funny. They don't understand, but they should. Nothing like a forced march through a zoo to wear a two-year old out.

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