Wednesday, December 14, 2011

All Creatures Great and Small

When all else fails, we fall back on our L.A. Zoo membership. We didn't have a good plan for today, so we hit the zoo to see the "panzees" and the "zebras...stripes."

The new Conservation Carousel is open and it is beautiful. For our first ride Jackson insisting on sitting down,  nice and safe, so we settled into this beautiful blue peacock chariot. The other chariot is--and I am NOT MAKING THIS UP--shaped like a giant ball of poo being rolled by a dung beetle. I asked the carousel manager about this and she said, "Tom Mankiewicz [the screenwriter and zoo trustee for whom the carousel is named] liked it." OK, so there you have it: One peacock chariot and one poo chariot.
Doesn't he look miserable? After we were all done he wanted to go "again," but during both of our two merry-go-round trips, J was highly suspicious of the goings-on.
Owls did the trick! Jackson agreed to sit on one of the "uppies" only when we found the one that had two owls sitting on a branch. He was still anxious but he gave it a fair shot. Mommy side note: This thing is just beautiful and so cleverly designed. The music is a little suspect, but all things considered, this was wonderful and we'll definitely be ponying up to ride the carousel ponies again in the future.

It's hard to hear what Jackson is saying in this video, but he's basically narrating the elephant's lunch. After we watched Billy eating his sugar cane, we watched him drinking water out of a trough and he playfully sprayed water for the crowd after every slurp. He was just showing off for us and playing around, but according to the zoo guy, Billy totally will spray visitors he doesn't like!

The zoo has their very own playground, way up at the top of the loop. I made Jackson pose inside the house just because the fallen ginkgo leaves were so pretty.

In addition to the carousel and the elephant, we saw the chimpanzees, the gorillas, a hippo, a rhino, a sleeping baby tiger, the wonderful pacing jaguar, some gorgeous Nubian ibexes and about a dozen tiny field mice. The zoo is literally crawling with zippy fearless little mice buzzing around the underbrush like so many windup toys. They were a nice change of pace from the big showcase animals.

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