Spring Break 2011 in review...
Last week, my Mother treated us to a day at the Pine Mountain Wild Animal Safari. The boys were really excited...so were the 5,999 other people who were there! Seems like lots of folks had Spring Break "Stay-cations" too. We just weren't able to go away this year.
I was really surprised at the wide variety of animals at the park. I didn't get to take pictures of all of them because I was too busy chasing b around. Part of the park is a "walk about" where you can encounter exotic lions, tigers and...
|Ligers are bred for their skills and magical powers.|
Yes, Ligers! For all of you Napoleon Dynamite fans out there, I know you appreciate this important reference!
There is even a reptile exhibit (ICK).
The most popular activity is the drive-thru tour. You can take your own vehicle, rent one of their vans, or ride a bus. We took the bus. B loved it and dramatically reflected, "My very first bus ride."
During the ride, you get to see and feed all kinds of animals. It is amazing to see them all living together in one habitat.
This camel "smiled" at us - on command! The bus driver kept saying, "Smile at the people," and he did!
It was a "wet" one from our camel friend. My favorite animals were the giraffes.
I have never been a real "fan" of giraffes before, but wow! When you see them up close, their fur is beautiful and they are so sweet!
Like the other animals, they get up close and personal. You really can't appreciate the tremendous size unless you are right there.
I tried not to freak out, but it wasn't easy!
I might have even screamed a little.
It was a crazy, but fun bus ride. Sadly, I must confess that b threw his empty food cup out of the bus window.
We couldn't pick it up because state law prohibits you from leaving the vehicle.
There was one important thing I learned about myself on this trip. I have always felt compelled to go on a mission trip. We have missionaries in our family, and I have always felt drawn to go and do something. Last year, a group of people from our church went on a mission trip to Africa. When they returned, many of them commented on the "smell of poverty". I had not really considered how the slums of Africa might smell. Let me just confess that if the smell is anything remotely similar to the odor of parts of this park, I will never make it abroad.
As the bus ride began, I had to keep my shirt up over my nose and mouth. I could not stand the smell, the dust from the dirt roads, and the "animal-ness" of them being so close to us. It was horrid. I thought I might not make it, and I wondered if Dante' included a wild animal reserve in one of his levels of hell.
I hardly opened my mouth during the entire ride - I was afraid to let that nasty air in! What really cracked me up was when I turned around and noticed my Mother wiping her mouth with the inside of her shirt. I knew she was dying, too - and she is a nurse!
So, what does all of this say about me? Am I a shallow, spoiled person? Probably so. I do support foreign missions, and I suppose I will still have to do so from afar for awhile.