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At the Zoo


It seems downright lame that it has taken me this long to finish posting about Chicago, since the trip was so long ago there was still a chance that the hometown team could win the Series.  The upside is it's giving me fun stuff to post about now, when things are not so much (Short version: as of July 1, my current job will cease to exist.  Or it could cease before then, they'll let me--and my entire dept-- know.  Plus life just seems to be generally trigger-y at the moment.)

So, yay, let's talk about our encounter with the wild denizens of the Windy City!

[n.b.: Because my previous forays into self-disclosure have been a little less forthright, this post will make much more sense if I just spit out the following: I have a dissociative disorder--(sorry, no link, cuz there's nothing out there I personally want to endorse).  I means me, and funnily enough, the tuff one also means me.  J, however, means my wife of 7 years and partner-in-crime for just about 20, without whom my collective life would without question be a much emptier place.]

I was warned off Lincoln Park as a "sad zoo," but in the end I decided to take the trip because admission is free.  This is supposing that the bus does not irrevocably eat your Chicago Transit Authority 7-Day Pass (that you still need for the next day and a half) (because you were checking with the driver that you're going in the right direction) (and so neither of you notice that you're putting it in the wrong slot.)  In which case, it costs x of the amount you spent on the pass that you haven't actually used yet times y of all the rides you will now have to pay for...I did the math on the ride over and am happy to say I haven't retained the number, it was just that bad.

The tuff one was the lead architect for this excursion and, unfortunately, feeling like she's done something bad or wrong can pretty much be counted on to precipitate a death-spiral of gloom lasting until she can be reassured that she's not actually in trouble.  Said reassurance has to come from J (my opinion is really of very little moment) and the organizers of J's conference had cleverly found themselves an auditorium with no cell signal, so we were a few hours out from that possibility.

Feeling totally dejected, I wandered around long enough to determine that the Endangered Species carousel was closed (which means you can't even get close enough to see it) and then went to find a restroom.  And there, tucked into the hallway of the cafe basement, was a Mold-A-Rama machine, where for $1.50 I scored an exact replica of the Wonderfalls wax lion.  Which was clearly a message to get over the transit misadventure, so we did.

And, all in all, we thought the Lincoln Park Zoo was pretty cool.  It's true that most of the enclosures were pretty small, and some of the animals seemed fretful, pacing their area back and forth.  But It had rained hard all night and the day before, and even though it was clearing up, it did seem like putting up with the weather could be affecting the mood. 

The place was practically empty, and for every anxious beastie, there were others who were to perfectly willing to pose and a few even seemed to respond when thanked or otherwise engaged in conversation (if the tuff one is excited, she talks. A lot.  This used to bother me when we were in public, but apparently I've gotten hardened to it.)

We spent all day, visiting our favorite guys over and over again.  We got a rockhopper backpack that is completely anatomically correct (by which I mean his colors...you'd be surprised how much merch posing as rockhoppers doesn't bother with any detail besides their justifiably-famous yellow feathers.)  You can see Wrigley, along with Stitch and Rex (the king penguin backpack) on the icon for this post.  And I had a Chicago-style hot dog complete with relish of a green I don't believe is normally found in nature.

I still haven't gotten the pix uploaded, but I'm sure I'll get around to it sooner or later, especially if my employers have anything to say about it.

(For the grown-up version of the doom spiral--when either J or I have to uh, gently point out that the other is angsting over that which she cannot change--we invoke Blanche.)





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