Tag Archives: lions

A day at the zoo

Building anticipation at the zoo entrance. As you can see, it was quite chilly when we began our tour.

It was spring break around here this week so grandma and grandpa decided to take the grandkids to the zoo for the day.  We selected Monday as it was supposed to be overcast, mild and no rain.  (Rain was predicted for most of the rest of the week but didn’t really happen.)

Due to COVID, the zoo has limited visitation so we bought our tickets online. They were timed to allow only a certain amount of people in at a time.  It’s been several years since we’ve been to the zoo and one of the grandkids had never been.  He was really excited.

The drive to Louisville was as much fun as the visit.  Our conversation went like this:

Boy (age 5) I can’t wait to get to the zoo!  I want to see the zebras!  His normal speaking tone is about 90 decibels.

I stared at the sun and it didn’t blind me.

G (grandparents)  Don’t do that.  You could hurt your eyes.

A little while later

B I just stared at it for like ten minutes and I’m still not blind!

DON’T DO THAT!

The conversation proceeded along those lines until we began counting water towers and cell phone towers.  The grandson is a very chatty child so when we were talking, his response was, Be quiet!  I’m trying to talk here! Which threw us into more fits of laughter. 

Meanwhile, big sister (age 11), Stop talking.  I’m trying to read.

We finally made it to the zoo.  Parking was fine but no one was leaving alternate spaces.  As we waited a few minutes to go in, I realized that everyone else in the area seemed to have the same idea to visit the zoo.  Whole carloads of parents and kids poured out.  I have never seen so many strollers and wagons in one place.

These giant birds were part of the Wild Lights exhibit which appeared throughout the zoo. There were dragons and penguins, giant shrimp and flowers of every kind. There must have been a few hundred of these on exhibit.

Entry was organized and we were off.  I didn’t realize until we got there that they were hosting a Wild Lights event which featured giant creatures, imaginary and real, and plants, in beautiful colors of every kind.  Unfortunately, the lighted parts were only for evening tours but it was still pretty spectacular.

I’m not quite sure what this imaginary creature was supposed to be but it was still neat to see.

The route for guests is about a mile and a half, downhill the first half and uphill the second half.  It thinned out a bit but not much.  Unfortunately, several of the animal exhibits were closed which was disappointing.  No snakes, lizards or porpoises.

These beautiful pink flamingos made quite a splash.

We stopped for a break about half way through with snacks and drinks we’d brought.  Then started heading back on the second half of the route.  Grandpa got tired and took a shortcut to the top to wait for us.  The clouds never did appear so the day really warmed up. 

I felt rather sorry for this jaguar but wouldn’t want to meet him outside the fence.
At last! The zebras! Someone was soooo excited! (And you can see that we’ve peeled off our jackets.)

The second half had loads more animals (those that weren’t hiding).  Snowy owls and snow leopards.  Lions, zebras, giraffes, gorillas, rhinoceros, and lots more.  Saw the seals and a manatee.  B I dropped my toy in the tank by accident.  It was my favorite. 

The beautiful carousel had an amazing variety of animals to ride. Most went up and down but the outside animals were stationary. A good way to end the day at the zoo.

We finally made it to the top and found grandpa sitting by the carousel.  The kids both had to have a ride.  Then for the requisite visit to the gift shop and looking for the “cheap toys” as the grandma behind me remarked.

B I LOVE THIS ZOO!

We didn’t even make it to the highway, about seven minutes, before he was fast asleep.  The whole day – beautiful sunshine, fresh air, LOTS of walking – tuckered us all out.  Early bedtimes for all.