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Published: April 21st 2010
Day 343 - Box Hill Resort
We’ve got a big day ahead of us today, we’re off to the Melbourne Zoo with the girls and Luke (Anna’s sister Paula’s son!). The girls dobbed fairly early on that they actually didn’t go to bed at 8pm last night at all, it was well past 10pm! It did not go down very well with the Chief but she’s got a whole day to sort out Mr Adams for his disobedience as we were out of the house early on!
These are the best behaved kids in the world, I’m sure of it. If there was a competition I’d be pretty confident of a win!
Pom Pom (Charlotte’s new name for our Tom Tom sat nav!) was leading the way to the zoo and doing a very good job as always. We quickly found somewhere free to park and then hot footed it to join the queue to get in. It was about a twenty minute wait just to get to the entry booths so we entertained ourselves and other families by singing the Pirate song! There’s lots of jumping around, silly actions and singing involved so we at least brought
Therese, Jordan, Amy, Charlotte, Grant, John, Anna, Katherine, Nicholas, Jemima, Sarah and Darryl
a few smiles to people’s faces if nothing else and of course it helped us to pass the time more quickly.
The big attraction at the zoo is the baby Thai elephant called Mali. She was born on 16th January this year and since that date has been receiving huge adoring crowds. Rather than rushing off immediately to join the inevitably long queue for her viewing we wandered through the nearby enclosures to see the lions, tigers, bears, pandas, tree kangaroos, baboons, gosh the list goes on and on.
We got close to the huge tortoises and chatted to the keeper, we watched the baboons being fed which was really funny as the keeper hides all their food while they are in a separate enclosure then lets them in to race around and find everything. Amy scared us all half to death when she managed to climb over the fence to the Pigma Hippo enclosure. I asked her if she’d climb in with a Lion, she scoffed and said “No, of course not” and then looked horrified when I told her that hippos were probably more dangerous! She hopped back over the low level fence pretty quick I
can tell you! I should probably add that this was the fence before the fence to get into the enclosure...but even so!!
By the time we wandered through to join the queue for Mali it was nearing her ‘nap’ time. The keepers give her an hour or so without the crowds each day but the advice we’d been given was to get in the queue at about a quarter to twelve. Our plan worked perfectly and while others around us were getting stressed at the waiting we sang the Button Song! There’s always something you can do to keep entertained!
At least at the end of the wait there was a half decent view of the Mali. Along with about 145 other people we spent five minutes gazing at the adorable girl as she followed her Mum and Aunty around.
Lunch involved more waiting, we didn’t manage to organise a full on picnic so treated everyone to chips, dim sims and potato cakes! Yes, very healthy - not! ‘Ferralville’ was out in force at the zoo today and we were subjected to a mother so frustrated with her four year running towards the playground that she screamed
“Don’t you f******* listen, that’s how children get stolen” in his ear. Then there was the Dad who couldn’t stand his child leaning on his leg so told him to go and stand the other side of the café on his own. Meanwhile our perfectly behaved three borrowed children laughed and joked and waited patiently for the food we wanted to slide down the shoots …. to then grab it and run! The rest of the ferals were in the afternoon queue to see Mali. As we wandered back to the Butterfly House, which involved walking next to the queuing families a chap just lost it thinking people were pushing in. Crikey! Don't stress, it's the weekend!!
There was still so much of the zoo to see but there was no point of dragging the kids absolutely everywhere. We covered most of the areas though, in particular we had a great time in the Butterfly House then the Spider’s Web and finally the Australian Animals section. The wombat area was a big hit but seeing a real live Cassowary, well that was huge for the girls having spent so much time listening to stories about Sydney (with a Y
from Cairns)! It was a great shame they didn’t have a cuddly Cassowary for sale in the gift shop but instead Charlotte and Amy came away with tiny baby elephants and Luke picked out a funny monkey! Everyone was happy and it was time to make our way home.
Luke’s a great lad and it was lovely for him to be comfortable enough in our company to come along aswell. He’s very much a boys boy and when he got a bit tired it was Darryl’s hand that he slipped his inside of, it was very cute.
The journey home was fun, fun, fun. We played the ‘Yes / No’ game where you cannot say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to any questions asked of it. Gosh the kids were good at it, it took us a while to catch them out. Luke really took it seriously and was having a great time coming up with some really complicated questions for us to try and answer, all the while avoiding saying ‘Yes’ or ‘No’! If you’re ever bored in a car give it a go, its great fun.
We got home in plenty of time for dinner and to
then head out to Fitzroy Gardens when the sun was going down in the hope of finding some cheeky possums to feed! Having travelled most of the way around Australia we’re a bit dubious about feeding wild animals, it’s something we’ve always avoided …. but ….. these are city possums and we’re reassured that it’s perfectly fine to feed them - especially when young children are very excited about doing it!
Fitzroy Gardens is a great place to visit, even at night! Captain Cooks cottage is here but because it’s so dark we don’t really get a good look. We do however get to see lots of cheeky possums that sneak down from the trees for a good feast on the fruit and the lettuce that we’ve brought them. Do Possums like lettuce? Well we’re not sure but Grant managed to pick up a huge box full from the local fruit and veg shop so we’re going to give it a try!
Here we were joined by Therese & Jordan, Katherine, John, Nicholas and Jemima. The possum feeding went very well. The kids just loved it and had so much fun running around in the dark. It was
great to see them being so gentle with the possums too, they’ll be talking about it for days to come.
It was late by the time we got back home and it had already been a huge day so after a swift stubby it was time for bed.
Dar and Sar
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