We celebrated Memorial Day by going to the Buffalo zoo. The night before we told Elisa that we were going to the zoo to see animals and started listing animals and her eyes got bigger and bigger. Since we reiterated the plans for the day the next morning, we heard the refrain of “Animals” in our ears multiple times on the 1.5 hour trip to the zoo. This was her way of saying “Are we there yet?”
Elisa had fun looking at the different animals, although I think she was mostly taking in the whole experience rather than picking favorite animals. She would sit and watch as long as mommy and daddy would let her. Perhaps she was just in awe. She got to pet the mule and calf and had a hyena come right up to the glass she was standing at. She got to “muck out” a stall and pick up eggs. She made sure Mommy and Daddy each had an egg before she got two for herself, having at least a tinge of sharing mixed with toddler self-centeredness. This goes right along with her current favorite phrase: “my turn”!
Elisa’s favorite parts may have had nothing to do with the animals. In the tropical rainforest area, she enjoyed walking across the hanging bridge and standing behind the waterfall to get wet. She kept going back and forth across the bridge and around to the back of the waterfall. She loved riding the carousel and really didn’t want to get off.
We decided to give a stuffed snake (unfortunately, we couldn’t find the real one in the cage…) a home since Elisa went right to them in the gift shop. She has a little tuneless song/chant that she sang for the snake on the way home: “My nake, You are my nake…” (Normally it is ‘baby’ or ‘mommy’ or ‘daddy’ instead of ‘snake’ – and ‘daddy’ did sneak in after snake a couple times.) She slept most of the way home and held the snake all the way, even waking up once when it slipped out of her hands and desperate to get her ‘nake’ back.