Zoos can be incredibly entertaining places to spend a few hours with the kids and today we visited the Henry Vilas Zoo in Madison, WI. I met one of my dearest girlfriends and her two lovely kiddos up there and we were not disappointed by the animals. We saw a pair of orangutans right off the bat that had the kids laughing as they taunted each other hiding in a large barrel and under a large sheet.
What we realized an hour or so later was that their taunting behavior was actually foreplay because when we strolled by their enclosure before leaving they were putting on quite a show for everyone!
Also entertaining was the Harbor Seal that sounded like the kids’ fathers’ snoring when it came to the surface to breathe along with a kookaburra bird sitting in a tree tenderizing a mouse by vigorously shaking it into a limp, swallowable meal. My girlfriend, Amy, and I were much more interested in seeing this process play out than the kids but we forced them to stay in the exhibit while we subjected ourselves to the slightly nauseating albeit very intriguing food preparation procedure.
We also saw a couple of frenemies (friends/enemies) that we thought were adorable but we’re also a bit bias. In true frenemy fashion this sweet moment only lasted about as long as it took to capture it on camera before the tides turned but we’ll take it.
After our zoo trip the kids and I went to visit some friends, whom we use to live below in Chicago, at their new-ish house just a few minutes from the zoo. Unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures, probably because I was too bust admiring their awesome home and catching up.
We finally headed home around rush hour and about 45 minutes into our drive, just after hitting a torrential down pour on the expressway my husband called to inform me that tornadic weather conditions were being reported in the direction I was headed. Luckily I was just about to pass the exit to Amy’s house so we crashed her place to wait out the storm. En route I saw paramedics performing CPR on the side of the road. It was a first for me and if I wasn’t’ already convinced that we needed to get somewhere safe that visual certainly sealed the deal.
Amy fed us a home-cooked meal, instigated some shenanigans involving boxes of tissue with our sugar-high, sleep-deprived children and then we once more hit the road for home hoping the weather would cooperate. The weather has been really nuts the past 24 hours. Last night at 2am the tornado sirens went off and we ran to grab the kids and huddled together in the basement until the threat had passed. Needless to say my oldest was a little on edge (and tired from disturbed sleep) during the drive home tonight and didn’t like the look of the clouds but we eventually made it safe and sound and exhausted but happy.
We’re headed to Brookfield Zoo in a few days so no doubt we’ll be doing a little comparison as to which zoo has the most entertaining animals. I think Madison’s zoo will be hard to beat with all the performances we were witness to today but I’m just hoping the weather straightens out by then!
Time to fall asleep to the lull of thunder and the flash of lightening as this little minion in my belly kicks the crap out of me. Woo hoo!