“Amnials” is how Hawkeye says “animals” at the moment. Frankly, I find it adorable. I always have to bite my tongue not to laugh and I have to sternly remind myself to say it correctly in response, and not indulge my own whimsy at his toddlerisms.
This past weekend we went to Dublin Zoo again. The weather held up just long enough for us to enjoy ourselves in the morning. We went early enough that it wasn’t crowded, and also it turns out that this is when more of the animals are up and about. So we got an unusually good look at the lions, we got to see some lizards active in the Reptile House, and we had some exciting moments with orangutans.
First though, we ran into this guy.
He wanders around the zoo freely and I’ve often photographed the peacocks on past visits. However, this was the first time I got to see the full monty, though my first sight of it was from the rear. In fact, I despaired of ever seeing him turn around at one point as he kept shaking his booty at the lady, who was showing very little interest in the preening peacock.
Then the wind picked up, and the lady wandered around in a circle and there was more boasting and cat calling, only it took the form of the wind making a very eerie sound through the puffed up tail feathers, which the male kept shaking at the female.
I don’t think she was buying it though.
Eventually, the harassed lady wandered way again and the guy just stood there, nonchalant, all like “she’ll be back.”
In the Reptile House, we got a very close look at the green crested lizard and then we got to see an awesome display by the mangrove monitor as he devoured his lunch. The guy kept shaking his head back and forth as if he bit off a bit more than he could chew and kept rubbing his face along the ground to trim down the edges of his meal.
The Mister then suggested we hit the South American House, which we often overlook, so I asked him what was inside. He peered at me over the rim of his sunglasses.
“South America.” Duh.
To be more precise though, there were various primates and birds and while we were in there we got to see the two-toed sloths. Now, usually these guys are literally just hanging around. Not doing anything. But here we got to see one lazy guy poking another lazy guy, like “dude, get up. My turn to curl up in there.” He was literally trying to pull the sloth out with his claws but never actually succeeded. The scene reminded me a lot of the Richard Scarry book I spoke of previously (in a more serious post) because the very last page of the book has a sloth hanging upside down. Hawkeye, however, just won’t accept that this is how sloths hang, because he always turns the book up-side down so that the sloth can be “right side up”. I have not yet been able to convince him that this is not necessary.
We saw a wee bit of the grey wolves, some flamingos, and watched the red panda clown about. (“The Dragon Warrior!”) We snacked a little while watching the sea lions swim up and down. We had a very good view of the lion pride, including the male lion. Hawkeye has picked up a habit of pronouncing it as “loiiii-on”. We don’t know where he got this but it’s kind of hilarious, the first 100 or so times that he said it. It was getting time to call it a day as Hawkeye was getting tired.
One the way toward the exit though we got to see this fantastic sight of the patriarch of the orangutan family crossing from one portion of his habitat to the other, high over the heads of the zoo-goers.
And to round off the trip, we were passing this sign when we overheard a mother explaining it patiently to her child, who must have been about seven or eight.
“And do you have a big, powerful brain? No? Well then, you must be a gibbon.”