It was my youngest sons 8th birthday, so for a treat I thought a trip to zoo would be perfect.
He loved to see all the different animals, especially the big animals, like elephants, giraffes, lions and tigers.
I also loved animals and it was a great opportunity to get my camera out and capture some more precious memories.
The sun was high in the sky surrounded by the most baby blue sky. The heat was just right. Perfect for wearing the most floaty of dresses as there was also a soft and gentle breeze that would gently blow over you intermittently. Just enough to reduce that feeling of being sticky and clammy. I truly loved summertime.
We both had on our shades and Alex wore his favourite X-Men T-Shirt with his American styles shorts.
“Let’s get a slush puppy,” I said.
“We can go and see the monkeys.”
Alex’s face lite up. He loved the monkeys, because they were so busy and mischievous. You never knew what they would do next.
I purchased a Strawberry and Lime Slush whilst Alex chose a neon blue coloured slush.
“Really…..?” I quizzed. A huge smile broke across his face, as he knodded excitedly.
I have no idea what flavour it was, I was to busy thinking food should not be that colour. But that’s kids for you. Radio active coloured food somehow appeals!
I noticed the stall also hand small bags of monkey nuts on the side for sale, so I purchased a bag. I thought this would be perfect to feed the monkeys, as that was our next stop.
The Monkry enclosure was busy and there was a line building up outside. However, we were not in a rush. The day was gorgeous, so we strolled aimlessly along, enjoying our slush ices until we connected at the end of the queue. Everyone was chattering amongst themself as they waited to get their ticket. So did we, as we continued sucking on our straws. The ice was melting quickly in the heat. So I made quick work of finishing up my slush. Alex however, was being less successful. In fact, the neon juice was rising and threatening to be all over his t-shirt soon, the rate he was drinking at.
“Drink up Alex!”
“Before it gets all over your shirt!”
He reacted like I had revealed some kind of mysterious bit information. Typical Alex, clearly his mind was off on some kind of a wander and he was no longer focused on his drink.
The queue began to move forward as the next wave of visitors got their tickets and walked in. I could see a steady stream of people exiting a gate further ahead on the other side to us. They were leaving the enclosure whilst we were now taking there place. I could hear the distinct screeching and high pitched sounds of the different monkeys, as we made our way into the entrance where we could now see the monkeys.
Alex made a B-line to a particular fence. The area was open designed, specifically for the needs of the monkeys it contained. There were around eight of them at our first stop. Some sitting while others moved swiftly through the huge branches and structures set out for them. They were so cute. Marmosets the board explained. One was black with these white tuffs of hair on either sides of bis head. A bit like a made professor. They were really adorable.
We continued on with our walk, stopping and starting as we took in the different species around us.
Finally we got to the Chimpanzee enclosure. Now they were a lively lot. There was railing around waist high that stopped you getting to close. We could still however share the nuts we had brought with the monkeys.
There were two directly before us and they stretched out their hands in anticipation of the nuts.
Alex placed a few in one of the hands. I placed a few nuts in the other. The palm was hard and firm. And I pulled my hand back quick as the chimp closed his hand in order to retract his hand and eat the nuts. I remember being startled at the speed and force he moved at. I could tell his hand was extremely strong. I guess from all the gripping and climbing. Alex placed some more nuts in the other chimps hand. She was a lot more gentle than the other one. So I reached out to give her a few more nuts. But before I could place them in her hands the other chimp tried to take them from her hand. I pulled my hand back and said ‘No!’ Firmly. As I looked at him square in the face.
The look that came back I could only describe as unnerving. Chimpanzees don’t blink. Well, not when their angry.
This one was royally ticked off. He looked at me totally fixated. Clearly he out ranked the female my son had be feeding and the nuts should have been going to him. Well to make matters worse I moved and change me position to give her the nuts and making it clear I was not going to give him anymore. I didn’t really hang around after that and soon thought it was time to move off towards the exit. His eyes never left me as we walk away. Even when I turned to look back I could see he was still staring at me.
Needlees to say, I was very glad that there was a barrier between us. As I know, I was certainly not in his good books. Most unnerving.