Last weekend Edz and I visited the Smithsonian National Zoological Park. It was a crisp fall afternoon the day before our one year anniversary. How do I know that? The date is inscribed on my ring. It was a chilly day and I felt really bad for some of the animals -- not to mention my tropical wife. It doesn't get this cold in Manila or Saipan. And although I've never been there, I don't think it gets this cold on the African savannah, either. Sorry, Mr. Lion.
Uncle Beazley, the triceratops that used to be on the National Mall has been transferred to the zoo and given a fresh paint job. It's funny what you remember from your own childhood because I distinctly remember climbing on him during my first visit to Washington, DC and playing a game with the other kids where we would line up and take turns clambering on his tail. I also remember reading The Enormous Egg, the book Uncle Beazley made famous. What I don't remember is if I read the book or met the dinosaur first.
I was informed that this is Jacob's girlfriend. Yes, that Jacob. Just like how everyone assumed by fluffy, sissy dog was a girl, I assume that all badass wolves are boys. Or maybe I've seen Twilight. Alright, delete the badass part.
I loved the beaver! This is Willow, a female beaver. I'm not sure how she got her name, but she can easily be identified because she's missing a chip out of her tail. Beavers evoke The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe for me and how our babysitter Kit Porter used to read the book to my brother, Alex. The volunteer manning the beaver exhibit told us that Willow was going to disappear into her beaver dam for the remainder of the winter soon. As soon as the water freezes, she and her two friends retreat into her den until the spring thaw (they go for the occasional swim, but they won't surface until the ice is gone).
These two stuffed animals are in one of the monkey cages to provide companionship to the lonely monkey that lives there. And for anyone who has ever had a dog, you know what kind of companionship stuffed animals provide.
I've put on some serious weight since the middle of the summer. I'm getting close to tipping the scales over 230 lbs., which according to scientists at the Smithsonian, makes me about the size of a small panda. But from this bronze statue, I may already be a medium panda. Dang it. I wanted to be a kung fu panda.
Kung Fu Panda 2 was the best movie of 2011. I have nothing more to say.
I felt bad for this cheetah, too. While the fall leaves probably make great camouflage, there wasn't much room for this cheetah to run.
'Cause This Is Thriller, Thriller Night
And No One's Gonna Save You From The Beast About Strike
You Know It's Thriller, Thriller Night
You're Fighting For Your Life Inside A Killer, Thriller
I think otters, whether from the sea or the river, are just about the best animals ever. If I die and am resurrected, I want to come back as an otter. But only if I can swim faster than great white sharks.
Want to see a peacock?
And can you guess why Edz liked the flamingoes?