San Diego Zoo

Trip Start Jul 15, 2008
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Trip End Jul 30, 2008


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Flag of United States  , California
Monday, July 21, 2008

Having had all we can take from the animals on the freeway it was off to the self proclaimed "World Famous", San Diego Zoo to visit over 4000 "caged" animals.  We can tell you up front that their proclamation about being world famous is correct. 

The morning started with a minor 12-year-old's shoe drama.  Apparently, it is cool to wear Vans skater shoes not tied and with the laces tucked in.  However, this is not comfortable for hiking a 110 acre zoo.  If you are 12 what do you do?  You fiddle with the laces as the gate to the zoo is opening so as to cause an incident similar to the Who concert in Cincinnati a few decades ago.   If you are a dad you get mad tell the 12-year-old to tie her shoes like a normal human being.  The reply from the 12-year-old is, "I will look stupid."  Dad's ever so supportive reply, "Who cares?  You will never see these people again."  12- year-old's response:  tears well up in eyes and pout.  Dad does not care.  He is just ready to tie something around someone.  To the rescue comes the one person who could negotiate Middle East peace.  Mom!  She says why don't you tie the shoes, and then hide the laces.  Brilliant in both its simplicity, and its diplomacy.   Situation resolved, blurb on the evening news avoided.

I will not attempt to describe everyone of the 100's of animals we saw.  Some things you just need to see.  I will tell you this.  We have never been to a zoo where the animals were more active or so close.  Case and point:  We saw a black jaguar walking in his cage.  Had any of us been stupid enough we could have reached across the fence into the cage and petted him as he walked by.  We saw a white wolf being walked on a leash in the middle of the park.  The whole zoo was like that.  The pandas were so close it looked like you could reach out and grab the baby to hold it. 

                                                                  Panther Video

It was inevitable that Pat and I would compare the DC Zoo with the San Diego Zoo.  So here is our comparison:   Unlike the San Diego Zoo at the DC Zoo you are so far from everything you need to bring binoculars.  Half the exhibits are "closed."  At the DC Zoo there are no animals being walked anywhere.   For that matter you rarely see one walking in the enclosure.   The San Diego Zoo offers a bus tour, express bus service around the park, and a sky way gondola car.  The DC Zoo offers you the opportunity to walk up hill, both ways.

                                                                  Wolf on Leash

All of this led me to conclude that there are not as many lawyers in San Diego as there are in DC.  Why would my warped mind come to this conclusion?  Fairly simple actually.  There is no way any group of self respecting DC civil litigation lawyers would allow this much access to animals without first  having you sign a couple 100 waivers, wear full metal body armor, and provide proof of health insurance prior to entering the zoo.  So either there are less lawyers out here to create paper work and paranoia, or they are just more laid back.
Here are a bunch of pictures and videos from the zoo.  Have fun looking at them. 

We leave for Sedona in the morning, type to you from there,

Mike

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