Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A Bug Goes to the Zoo

(simultaneously posted on Cocktails and Dreams)

Just three weeks after FINALLY having custom orthotics made, I decided to give them a true road test.  On October 15, Bug and Peanut brought their parents down for a trip to Zoo Atlanta and the Georgia Aquarium.  They picked me up early in the morning, and we made the trek to Grant Park, home of the zoo.  It was their first visit.  It was my first visit since 1991.  I don't know who was more excited.  They were all excited about seeing the animals, I was excited to watch Bug as he saw the animals.

As we're walking through the entrance, the conversation went something like this:
Me: "Bug, what animal do you want to see today?"
Bug: "Giraffelephant."  Yes, that is one word.
Me, laughing: "The giraffelephant, huh?  Well, what about brother?  What animal does he want to see?"
You must remember that Peanut, at this point, is only 9 months old, and doesn't really grasp what animals are.
Bug: "He wants to see the pig."  Matter-of-fact.  Peanut wants to see the pig.  I love this kid!

One of the first exhibits had just what Bug wanted.  A giraffelephant.  Or, maybe it was an area that had BOTH a giraffe AND and an elephant together.  Either way, he was happy!  I think he would have stayed there all day long, if only we'd let him.

Along the way, there were gorillas, lions, tigers, pandas, snakes (Bug wasn't impressed with those), a naked mole rat (I don't know if he liked Rufus, but he sure liked the tunnel going in and out of the exhibit), birds, flamingos, gators, and a petting zoo.

There was also Dippin' Dots.

Peanut wanted ice cream, too, but we made him stick to banana puffs.

Later on, Bug convinved me to pose for a picture.

We ended the visit with a ride on the train and the carousel (Bug wanted nothing to do with them until we were on them, then did not want to get off.  Peanut liked them from far away, but was not so keen on the actual experience.  What can you do?), and then headed back to the parking lot for a well-deserved picnic.  After filling our bellies and resting our feet, we drove about 3 miles to another parking lot, and prepared to enter the Georgia Aquarium.

This was, as with the zoo, their first visit.  I, however, am an annual passholder.  Having experienced the aquarium before, I was able to concentrate what they wanted to see.  It is so much fun to see something through the eyes of a two-year-old!  Much like at the zoo (look, Bug, it's Timon and Pumba!  Look, Bug, it's Simba!), several animals were identified by their proper Disney name.

Much like at the zoo, Bug did not want to pet the animals.

Much like at the zoo, Bug somehow convinced me to pose for a picture.

Bug surprised us all by his reaction to the shark tunnel.  Being scared of everything else, we fully expected him to be terrified of a tunnel surrounded by sharks and other somewhat frightening marine life.  Not the case, at all.  I do believe that his favorite part of the aquarium was the tunnel.  We had to end the visit by going through the tunnel one last time.  All the way home, Bug kept pointing out tunnels (underpasses, parking garages, anything that resembled a tunnel).

It was days later that I realized: There are almost no pictures of Bug and Peanut with their parents!  There really were two other adults on this trip!  I promise, there were!!!  I guess I monopolized the kids.  Oh well, consider it preparation for a trip to Disney.  Bug's first trip to Disney World is in the planning stages!

And just in case it's slipped your notice, I am so completely in love with this kid!