We arrived about 20 minutes after it opened and spent only a few minutes in line. Throughout the day I received calls from friends saying how long the lines were. I figured we had beat the "sleeping in crowd" and would be leaving as people were entering. We discovered later that we were right...thank goodness!
As my husband hadn't been to the zoo since his own second-grade trip, I took the opportunity to show off my knowledge of the lay of the land. Threw in a few facts here and there and I'm sure it was like having a zoo guide right there. Having taught Grade Two for many years, I know the zoo like the back of my hand. Surprisingly the renovations and me missing last year's class excursion (I was on maternity leave) didn't throw me off track.
We took my usual Round the World tour. Some of the animals we saw included the polar bears, tigers, camels, alligators, stick insects, zebras, jellyfish, giraffes, elephants, flamingos, lions, and numerous species of monkeys. Surprisingly 90% of the animals were awake! That almost NEVER happens. We skipped the Canadiana part as we weren't really in the mood to go up and down that large hill just to see a raccoon, bison, and the grizzly bear. I think five out of six years that bear was always asleep anyway.
Hannah watched in fascination as animals fifty times her size chewed their food or slowly walked across the field. She never seemed to be afraid even though we were right next to a huge emu or in front of an alligator. Babies have no fear. So great. We tried to tell the peacock how beautiful it was so that it would spread its wings...no luck!
It was around 1:00 p.m. when we left. We'll probably be back the next time there is a Teacher's Day. Thanks to the zoo for recognizing that teachers need a break (albeit educational) too!