On Friday the other half and I decided to take a trip to the Zoo. Any mention of the Zoo brings out the age old gags.
“We’re going to visit the in-laws!”
“I’ve had enough of you now, It’s time we got you back in your cage.”
There always seems to be one involving somebody looking like one of the monkeys, whether it be a resemblance to a big bright red derrière or mischievously fondling your naughty bits in front of any one who will watch. I’m sure you all get the picture.
We’ve been down south now for a couple of years and as you’d expect we’ve done about 5% of the things we had planned to do when moving down here. We’ve managed to have a trip to the beach, (we live about 300 metres away so that doesn’t really count) we’ve been to Monkey World, (disappointingly depressing) had the odd shopping trip to Southampton, (again, nothing special). But, unfortunately we are still yet to take a bike ride through the ‘New Forest’, take a day trip to the Isle of White or make complete fools of ourselves learning to surf! The trip to the Zoo then, was something of a rarity.
We stopped off at the supermarket en route to get things for a picnic, being a reasonably nice day it seemed like a better alternative then what would undoubtedly be an expensive and mediocre lunch in the zoo’s ‘Cafe Graze’. Arriving a good hour and a half later than intended, (around 11.30) there was the inevitable long queues waiting patiently by the entrance to meet us.
We got into the Zoo around midday and Katie immediately decided that we should eat before seeing the animals. Now after three and half years together I know what this really means is:
“Scott, if we do not stop and eat first I will be incredibly grumpy for the rest of the day, complain about how busy and crowded everything is, moan about unruly children and unfit parents, eventually giving myself a headache which will be your fault!”
I am no longer stupid enough to deny my other half of her precious mealtimes. I have been in the past. I took her to Monkey World for her Birthday not long after we’d first moved down here. Instead of eating, we decided to go straight to the monkeys. This resulted in all of the above and if that was not bad enough, right at the very end, just as she was ready to erupt, a bird decided to fly past and drop a little present right on top of her head. Before she could say anything, I put my arm around the shoulder, told her we’d go home and ushered her toward the exit, ingeniously hiding that fact that I was doing everything in my power not to laugh hysterically.
I managed to enjoy the picnic, despite being stared at throughout by a rather scary child. it was so surreal I actually took a picture of her simultaneously giving me evil eyes while forcing far too much sandwich into her mouth. I imagine if her parents had caught me taking a picture of their deranged offspring they’d not have seen the funny side. I’d probably not be allowed in another Zoo for a long time and maybe get a special register to sign. But that didn’t happen so we did eventually see some animals.
First stop was the penguins! To be honest, I’ve never really got the fascination with penguins…or birds in general. Okay, they are sort of cute and their waddle is a bit funny. But they don’t really any thing else do they? One of them did give us a wave as he swam passed the viewing window though so can’t moan.
I was really quite impressed by the range of animals on offer at Marwell. No bears, pandas or lions but there was quite a few of the weird and wonderful. Capybaras, (the largest rodent in the world) white rhinos, a tiger, ocelot, amur leopard, something called a bat ear fox and even something I’ve not quite seen the like before from Madagascar called the fossa. There is of course Marwell Hall on the grounds to which we are led to believe was used by good ol’ Henry VIII to give Lady Jane Seymour the 16th century equivalent of the modern day booty call.
We managed to get round the place in about four hours which was plenty of time to see just about everything. We ended up in the gift shop looking at the expensive tat on offer and of course did not leave empty handed. There’s a new addition to the cuddly toy collection which seems to be growing at a concerning rate for a couple in their late twenties. Desmond the Giraffe has joined the group.
Here’s a few more snaps taken from the day.
I know both my partners and my photography skills leave a bit to be desired but I’m sure they’ll get better the more of these I do. Also, in future I will be looking into how I can get these pictures into one slide show so each article is not huuuuge!