Locked in at the Zoo
Many of the blogs I read had some version of the Remembering 9-11 post.
Mine was quiet in a way because of 9-11.
Because of 9-11, my husband's day job has him in uniform most days of the week and some days of the weekend.
Because of 9-11, instead of being called a "weekend warrior, hur hur hur", complete strangers come up to him in the grocery store and shake his hand or pay for his breakfast when he eats in a restaurant.
Because of 9-11, we spent the evening of 9-11 locked in the zoo!
Operation Military Kids is a program meant to lighten the part of the load that kids bear when they have a mom or dad who is in the military.
Through OMK, my husband, our son, and I went to the zoo with a bunch of other military families, were locked in when the zoo closed, and spent the night in Binder Park Zoo's Wild Africa area.
We had dinner and did some icebreaking activities. We had (microwaved) s'mores (a marshmallow and a square of chocolate bar sandwiched in graham crackers) and a campfire. We slept in sleeping bags in a screened building and woke up to the crowing of red jungle fowl.
This morning, we had breakfast and watched ostriches up close.
We watched as the bontebok, zebra, and giraffes were released into their enclosure for the day. (Can you spot the giraffe? A triangular light spot halfway up the slope?)This is a 19-acre area with two natural ponds. I was amused to see that the giraffes have browsed it up around the edges of the fence just like a giant horse pen. It's a big enough area that the animals don't wear it out. I had to stitch two shots together to get the whole width in:
Here's a zoom shot as they were let out. You can see the two keepers who followed them out and shut the gates that lead back to the barn where they spend the night, and one of the two baby giraffes just born this summer.
In the "I love my camera" department, I cropped out all but the bit with the mother giraffe and her baby.Pretty good for about a quarter of a mile away.
Later in the day the giraffes came to the overlook where you can buy part of their daily food and let them take it through the netting. Baby Giraffe stood patiently . . .
While his mother ate some lettuce.
And tonight we are all completely wiped out and looking forward to sleeping in our beds and not on a concrete floor.