The world famous San Diego Zoo

Yesterday marked the first day of our mini vacation to San Diego. I know, I know . . . we really went out of our way this time. But it was the biggest effort I could muster, considering the craziness of this long summer. And as far as the kids are concerned, you only need a hotel stay to turn an adventure from a day-trip into a vacation. Another upside - walking home is a feasible option for misbehaving children.

We started out late, deciding that sleeping in was of far higher importance than getting to our hotel before check-in. We stopped at Pavilions to stock up on Diet Dr. Pepper and deli sandwiches, then were off on our 70 mile road trip. After an hour or so Jack asked if we were there yet and happily I said yes, our long and arduous trek was finally over. We checked into our home away from home, then were off to the zoo.

The world famous San Diego Zoo was accommodatingly under crowded on this Labor Day afternoon. We had no wait (and the best seats) for the tour bus, the sky tram, and the bronze animals.

We had easy access to the world famous San Diego Zoo pandas and the stinky petting zoo.

Addy, Jack, and Ellie were eager participants at the Dr. Zoolittle show. Addy assisted with snake charming and Jack and Ellie ate beetle larvae. Yes, beetle larvae. Again with that peer pressure thing. Maybe I should invite random strangers over on nights I plan to serve lasagne.

Sketch spent the day being less than cooperative. I guess he's too used to the easy life at home - no sun, no stroller, no heat, boob on demand, etc. Things 1-3 found that the best way to calm him down was to chant his name, so we, and the rest of the world famous San Diego Zoo visitors were randomly subjected to a chorus of "Frank-lin, Frank-lin, Frank-lin, Frank-lin . . ."

We got to enjoy the last night of Zoo Nights, when the world famous San Diego Zoo stays open until 9pm. Sounds like a great idea, right?
It would be, except the zoo is not well equipped for visitors after dark. Most of the animal exhibits span hilly terrain with severely inadequate lighting. We spent sunset with the great apes thanks to a one-way uphill people mover.

Unfortunately the stroller-friendly way down the hill, the aviary, closed and locked at sunset. Administrators at the world famous San Diego Zoo should be happy I'm not a litigious person, as double-teaming a double stroller down 100+ steps after dark with 4 exhausted Things could have easily turned tragic.

We closed out the evening at a cirque style show, complete with hand balancing, duo static trapeze, bungee trapeze, flying silks, and circeaux. This show alone was worth the entrance admission to the park, or would have been, if we hadn't had passes. In addition to the acrobatics, the show included music and video which lauded the efforts of world famous San Diego Zoo keepers to promote and protect exotic and endangered species through education and conservationism. Which got me to thinking . . .

Why does the world famous San Diego Zoo reiterate over and over the importance of protecting habitat and natural resources, and investment in renewable energy sources and biodegradable products, such as utensils made from compostable potato starch . . .

and then send each of your kids home with a meal that came in this?

Regardless of the extra baggage, we left the world famous San Diego Zoo feeling more connected to the animal kingdom than when we walked in.
We were sweaty, smelly, and tired. Tired, not just physically, but also of being informed at every turn by tour guides, docents, food stand workers, and sky tram operators of just how famous this San Diego zoo really is.

Missing from photo: Ellie. She was in the bathroom trying to brush all remnants of beetle larvae out of her teeth.


blasers said...

Bravery at it's finest, taking on 4Things at the Zoo! Sounds like you had a great time, though. It IS a great zoo- I still remember going there as a youngster and loving it. If we ever make it back to CA we'll have to go!

Pepper said...

I can't believe the beatle larvae. Ick. Even Abby said, no way. LOL. Cute! I really love your blog, Cec. Your family is so cute!