Saturday, June 14, 2008

York's Wild Animal Kingdom!

Friday was Jesse Yong's first trip to the Zoo...

So of course I'm going to share more pictures than you probably want to see, although I significantly edited them down. :) But he was so stinkin' cute, even though it was a bit overwhelming for him. Boy oh boy was he tired come noontime.

First off was the Ducky Pond, which was -- as you can imagine -- a HUGE hit. As you know, we L-O-V-E duckies. All shapes, sizes and colors. We talk about "wah-wah" and the "duckies" and quack quack quack every time -- mind you, every single time -- we drive by the Pond around the corner from the house.

But we just don't like the appearance of being bitten, despite the fact that duckies don't have teeth. But duckies know we have food in our hands and come rushing over to us, their beeks snapping madly away, so we were not a big fan initially. It got a little better as we went along.

Next came goat-feeding. We were not a big fan....same reason, except compounded by the fact that goats come over running and jumping. So we'll skip those slightly grumpy photos and move onward...

...To deer-feeding. By this point, we were becoming more accustomed to how it all is supposed to go, and how most of the time (barring a few minor instances) real danger is much less abundant than perceived danger.

Truth be told, we had the most fun visiting each and every feed-dispenser, just putting in quarters, turning the dial and watching how the mechanism works in general. There was lots of analyzing to be done. In fact, sometimes we put the feed back in, I guess to see if it got sucked back into the magic plastic chamber.

After lunch we went for a Paddle Boat ride with Auntie and Uncle and cousins and got to paddle around the pond with the duckies surrounding us in the water:

OK, and this was just plain weird. Very surreal. I was standing there thinking to myself, how wild is this? The last time I saw something like this, we were still waiting to meet Jesse for the first time....

But here at a zoo in York, Maine, they built a little scorpion exhibit using the Terra Cotta Warriors as their backdrop. Their rational was that scorpions abound in China, so why not?

I had to get a picture of Jesse Yong looking down on an American replica of one of the most famous archeological finds in his Chinese history. He wasn't there with us when we saw the real deal, so this is as close as we'll get (at least for a long while!)

And no adventure with Mama is complete without some sort of faux pas, whether small or great. So here it is: We went into the Butterfly Exhibit and wandered around for quite a few minutes looking at all the rare and beautiful butterfly species flying all around us. It was basically a huge tented exhibit, where we could walk around inside the center area with the fountains. But the sides were fenced off so the butterflies could safely alight on the flowers and such.

Well, Jesse and Abby were highly entertained, not by the flowers and butterflies flying about, but by the drain. Jesse is all about drains (another mechanism to analyze, since I've told him that rain [i.e., water that hits our head and makes it so we can't go outside to play] goes down the drain).

So while he was occupied, I took a few more minutes to snap some pictures like this...

....only to turn around and see one of the exhibit workers bent over talking to Young Hendrickson who had -- I discovered -- snagged one of the fluttering exotic species in his hand (but fortunately released it unharmed). The guide was explaining, in rather serious tones, that these were fragile and we must not touch and so on and so forth. Sigh...

It would seem it doesn't run in the genes, so I guess I'm imparting it by association.

Thus ends the ages-old nature vs. nurture debate raging in psychology circles.

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