Clarence and I went to the Forest Park Zoo in Massachusetts!
(And There I Met My One True Love!)
Last Saturday, early in the morning, Clarence of Belden came over to my house to announce that he and his person were going to a zoo in Massacusetts. News of a trip to anywhere will perk up my ears and a trip to another country like Massachusetts will really get my blood flowing! Clarence proceeded to discuss how and what he and his person had packed in the car for the big excursion. I sat and listened to him brag about how he was going to take his Pentex dSLR and would have a great time taking pictures of all the animals. He was really excited. I felt rather left out of things but I listened politely, washing my paws and behind my ears to hide my unhappiness. "Yeah!" he exlaimed. "We are going to have a lot of fun today."
"That's nice, Clarence," I replied, trying to hide the tremor in my meow.
Clarence nodded. "My person said that you could come with us if you really want to." Of course I wanted to! I dashed into the house, pulled my Fuji S5200 from the drawer, checked the batteries and the media card and ran back to the deck where Clarence was waiting.
"I'm ready to go now!" I meowed loudly. "By the way, what kind of animals do they have at the park? Should I bring a bag of peanuts for squirrels or something?"
Thirty minutes later, Clarence's person picked us up at the intersection of Wooden and Twin Brook and we were on our way to the great adventure! After another thirty minutes, Clarence and I fell asleep nestled between the cooler and a blanket which was on the back seat of the automobile. When we finally awakened, we were at the Forest Park Zoo. Since we were cats, we didn't have to pay extra to enter the grounds.
It was a really nice day. The sun was shining and a breeze cooled the air. Happily, Clarence and I ran from one cage or habitat to another, snapping photographs and waving our paws at the little foxes and the kangeroos. Some of them waved back but many of them did not. Snobs!
Here are a few photographs that I took along the way.
Frankly, I had never seen a turtle as big as this one! She told me her name was Zelda. I asked her if she liked living at the zoo?
She wagged her head at me. "It's alright. I can't complain. Food is good."
When I asked her how old she was, her mood changed abruptly.
"You should know better than to ask a lady how old she is! You have a lot of nerve!" she snapped. I thought it better then, to move on...
Frazier was no bigger than I am but he insisted that he was very ferocious and had to be locked up because his very appearance struck terror into the hearts of all who saw him. "Do I strike terror in your heart? Are you afraid of me?" he asked.
"Not in the least," I replied, trying not to laugh.
The fox shook his head. "Oh, well, you can't win 'em all. Maybe I should growl or something. That would stop them in their tracks!"
"Probably not," I said. The fox shrugged his shoulders and walked away. "I could study physics and become a nuclear scientist. Or maybe not."
A short distance from where I met the little horse and the smaller fox, I came across a fenced in area which had the most unusual animals. They certainly weren't cats or dogs! I climbed onto the fence but still couldn't read the sign. I had not brought my reading glasses.
Apparently the odd looking creature saw me trying to read the sign, because he/she sauntered over to the fence. "In case you are wondering, I am a camel," she announced. "Thought I'd spare you having to ask."
"Well, that's nice to know," I meowed. "I've never seen a camel in my neighborhood!"
The camel snorted. "You are a silly cat! Of course you wouldn't see the likes of me in your neighborhood. From the looks of you, I'd say you were a common ordinary street cat. Streets are in towns and cities. I am a desert animal."
"Okay," I responded, a little miffed that she would refer to me as a common, ordinary street cat. "I can see that the desert has turned you into a nasty, ill mannered , bad tempered what ever you want to call yourself!"
The camel stomped her feet. "Oh, don't be so sensitive, cat! I was teasing! Just having a little fun, that's all! Life in the zoo can get to be boring sometimes. Humans have no sense of humor when I spit on them. It's all done in fun, you know... By the way, my name is Mary Ann. What's your name, kitty?"
"I am called Henri of Twin Brook, former street cat converted to housecat," I purred. "It's nice to meet you, Mary Ann."
"I suppose you would like to know what kind of camel, I am? I am referring to the breed, of course," replied Mary Ann.
I nodded. "Yeah, I'd like to know that! I could lord it all over my friend Clarence who would probably never think to ask such a question."
"I am a Bactrian camel. If I had but one hump, I would be a Dromedary camel, like in Dromedary brand figs." She smiled at me. "Now you know!"
We chatted for awhile, discussing global warming, the depletion of the ozone layer and the melting of the glaciers in the Artic Circle. Serious stuff! This is one intelligent camel, let me tell you!
"By the way, kitty," asked Mary Ann, "how do you go from being a street cat to a housecat?"
I thought about it a moment before answering. "I had to take a course in feline ethics. Then I took a course in behavior modification and then did a workshop on cat hygiene and manners. It took awhile but it paid off."
Mary Ann laughed loudly. "I bet you learned not to pee on the rug?" Well, yeah. I learned to use a litter pan. We said our goodbyes and she promised to read my stories on the web.
I took a few more photographs, mostly portrait shots of some of the larger zoo residents.
I asked her if I could interview her, but she said she didn't talk to strangers. "There are a lot of whackos out there!"
Click on the eye to go to Page Two!
Meet my one true love!
Pat my head to return to civilization!