Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day Picnic - Rio Grande Zoo

Late this morning Dan, Tim and I stopped by Church's Chicken to pick up fried chicken and all the trimmings. We took it to the zoo where we hoped to find a nice, shady spot to enjoy our picnic. We weren't disappointed. Although there were lots and lots of people there, the park is large enough to easily accommodate everyone. We had no trouble finding a shady place on the lawn to spread out our blanket.

After we ate, Tim and I strolled around, looking at some of the animals. The polar bears were really putting on a great show today. I think they are my favorite exhibit. They had a big barrel, floating in the water, that they were playing with. Tim and I watched them from beneath the water line, as well as above.

The cats were all taking a siesta, during the afternoon heat.

The seals and sea lions, on the other hand, were very active.

People were tossing fish food to the koi, exciting the fish and disturbing this swan's serenity.

And this old fellow, who was giving rides, looked hot and tired.

After making our way through about one-third of the exhibits, I was getting tired and sent Tim on, by himself, to see the rest of the animals. I went back to join Dan, who had stretched out, with his baseball cap over his face, and gone to sleep (I should have taken his picture. He looked a bit like the napping lion - above). The temperature was not too hot, and the trees provided enough shade to make the day just about perfect.

When Tim had finished viewing the animals, we cleaned up and got ready to leave. Dan offered to go get the car and bring it to the front gate, so we didn't all have to walk to it (we had to park at the far end of the parking lot).

After we dropped Tim off at his apartment, did some grocery shopping, and arrived home, we discovered that we didn't have our blanket. It wasn't just any blanket. It was a quilt, that Dan's grandmother had made for him as a child. We've used it for years for picnics and for bed coverings, so it hasn't been pampered, and it's getting quite worn. But it is very special to Dan. Some of the squares are even made out of his "spacemen" flannel pajamas.

So . . . back we went to the zoo. We have a season pass, so it was no trouble for me to get back in the front gate. At first I didn't see it where, I was sure, we had left it. But on second look, I saw it nearby. A young couple and their child were sitting beside our folded-up quilt, and were thrilled when I came to retrieve it. They were hoping someone would come and ask for it, and if not, they were going to take it to lost-and-found. I thanked them, and carried the quilt back to the car, where Dan was waiting anxiously. All's well that ends well, they say. It was a very nice Memorial Day.

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