|Feeding a giraffe|
I have been using a regular umbrella, but it shades a bit - doesn't block UV rays. I've done some research and this isn't a "pretty parasol." C, my work cohort, says, "Oh, lace will diffuse the rays." Nope. Lace gives you a lacy sunburn! I got one that is endorsed by dermatologists and the Melanoma Foundation. I'll let you know how it works.
At the Zoo...
Picking up on our travels, we had another of those "not quite what we planned" days, which are often the most fun. We started off for the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo -- America's "highest" zoo! Lest you think "high" as in funny brownies and smoking, we're talking altitude here. The zoo is 6,412 feet up. Actually built on the side of a mountain, so the walking paths are basically switchbacks. We started AND finished by feeding their giraffes. It was awesome! About 95% of the exhibits were "habitats" and only a few actual "cage" set ups. I thought the gorillas looked sad...
We spent most of the day there. It's also huge in square footage. Needless to say, on most of this trip, I got more than my 10,000 steps in!
|"You have romaine. I want romaine!"|
Oops, looks like I got a Mennonite or some one of those religions in the photo here... there were a crowd of them. As I fed the budgie, I ended up giving my seed stick to a little Plain boy (sorry - I'm not sure they were Amish - their clothing wasn't as simple as I'm used to seeing, and the women didn't wear bonnets).
|Time for my sun bath|
People stopped because he apparently crosses a sidewalk on this rope and hangs out in a tree across from the building. Guess they can catch him if he makes a break for it...
Of course, the only time he had his tail up, he was not facing in our direction, so the only shot I have is this one, where he's obviously thumbing his beak at us. He must've pranced around for a good 10 minutes, with his rear end facing us, just to annoy me.
The HUMAN kids were obnoxious. The goats were better. They had an area where the wolves were, and they were lucky enough to have a litter. There was signage saying, "Please be quiet; baby wolves sleeping." Well. Nope. Gotta pound on the glass, and scream when Mama and Papa wolf prowl. Poor Mama looked a little stressed; probably wanted to eat the little humans.
|"Downward-facing Goat" pose|
But they are funny. This is a shot that I'd love to find an appropriate meme for. I was laughing and telling The Kid that this was "Downward facing Goat" pose.
We thought about the Will Rogers shrine - on TOP of the mountain. According to one of the zoo guides, it was a "really steep 2-lane road" to get up there. Two reasons why we didn't go: (a) my car had been "chugging" the whole trip, not happy about the altitude; and (b) it was already 1:30 p.m. and we had a date with Kid #1 and J. for 5-ish, so we had to skedaddle.
|Will Rogers Shrine|
|Who loves a wallaby?|
But -- (gulp!) 8,000 feet up? I'm not sure I would have been enthused even if Hubby was driving. And he is used to driving in the mountains, where I am not.
The "Australia" area of the zoo was interesting. Some of the exhibits were "standard" in that there were crocodiles... But around the perimeter, there were wallabys! If I wanted to disobey the signs (and risk a bite), I actually could have reached over to pet this little guy. He was rather intent on his dish, so I wasn't going to disturb him.
They hopped pretty much wherever they wanted, and tended to stay up above us on the grassy area set aside for them. That Australia area was, of course, gated, and there were lots of zoo staff around.
One thing I noticed is that they try to give the animals some kind of exercise and stimulation. The eagle enclosure did have lots of perches, and the skyline view was up in the air, for the birds, at least. But this was the one shot where the bird was actually looking at us, even though he(?) was on the ground. They had a relatively quiet place there, which was probably for the best, all things considered.
You have to love the comical face in this porcupine. This is the American version. They had an African one and that bugger was huge! It looked like a low-slung version of a dog, and jeeze - the quills on the African one looked to be almost 12" long! This little guy just climbed up on his limb, and as I watched, he fell asleep. And stuck out his tongue. How cute is that? In all truth, he wasn't anywhere near as cute as the otters were, but I wasn't able to get a good photo of the one otter - he was swimming so fast that we were just fascinated watching him.
Nothing says "zoo" like a vulture... In the enclosure alongside the giraffes were a rather decent selection of birds. The Kid spotted the vulture before I did. He was just sitting there, kind of eyeballing the tortoises. Which were moving, by the way!
There were a lot of birds that could, I suppose, have flown away, but didn't. I'm not sure what they were, but I did recognize this one.
What I appreciated about this place, as I said, was that so much of it was open. They were building, and expanding - they're raising money now for their new habitat for both penguins and hippos. I handed over five bucks for the cause... As long as they continue their research and learn more about how to safeguard what Agent Orange and his minions are trying to kill off, I'll try to help combat the scourge to our planet.
We went to Green Line for lunch - a burger joint with THE best burgers. Seriously, I even ate onions. And I hate onions!
This is, of course, a hole in the wall. The best places usually are. There are about 6 things on the menu. That's it. You don't really get a choice with the burgers, except "loaded" or "not loaded" -- but you can add bacon. We split an order of fries.
So much for Whole 30 -- but I figured I walked that burger off at the zoo, so I wasn't totally worried. I was a bit concerned, because aside from my own feelings about onions, they usually disagree with me - heartily. But these were sauteed onto the top of the burger, and I just ate 'em. And they were fantastic.
This restaurant is a favorite of Kid #1, so of course, I texted this photo to him and said, "Guess where we are???" As a mom, I'm entitled to drive my kids nuts. It's in the rules.
This is one of those places that you really don't find unless the locals tell you about it. The special that day, which was really, really tempting, was pulled pork. I love pulled pork, and I'm always ready to taste a new version.
But I'm glad I got the burger.
After that, we found a local yarn shop (see below), and then we headed back to the condo. The kids were supposed to go hiking, but as we said - this was a day when things didn't go the way we'd planned. They ended up not hiking. Actually Kid #1 took Kid #2 to his house, and I got about an hour to myself.
I needed it. I was planning on hitting the yoga studio near the condo, but a quick Google search told me that the class time they had was from 6 - 8 p.m. that night. I was due at their house around 5-ish, to attend a gig at J.'s studio.
We only stayed at the party a few hours; both of us were tired, and since I'm not a drinker, it was time to go.
Ewe & Me, a yarn shop in Colorado Springs. I poked around with the intention of writing a review, but you know what? The vibe was off. I think it was because Kid #2 followed me into the store and the guy (turns out the husband of the owner) was kind of giving him side-eyes. He was obviously with me, so I don't know what the guy's problem was.
I only felt like he wouldn't have appreciated me interviewing him or taking pictures. It's a nice little shop, and apparently, they were planning a move to larger quarters at the end of the month. There was a group there knitting, and I bought these beauties - to support indie dyers and local spinners. Doing my part for the wooly economy.
The blue one on the left? The dyer was actually there. Both are really nice yarns, and both are destined for shawls.
The prices were about what I expected, and their sock yarn collection was pretty impressive. The kits were pricey, but then, I think kits usually are. Not too much in the books or needles department, but lots of frou-frou: mugs, bags, etc.
I'll wind one of these up when I finish Close to You and see what I can do.
Close to You will probably be finished this weekend. It's going to be too hot to do much of anything, though I do have a gem & crystal show at the studio tomorrow, which will take up my afternoon.
I know. I could be knitting, but the gems and crystals will be cool.
Quick report on the Bellabeat. I'm enjoying all the ways of wearing it EXCEPT that I don't feel like it records accurately, with me, at least, when it's clipped to my shirt during the day. At night, I clip it to my pjs, but during the day, it works best for me on the necklace or on my left arm.
I'm adding meditations manually, and unfortunately, since being back from Colorado, my water intake has gone wayyyyyyyy down. Gotta get back to that. I need it.
I was in one of those weird FB "challenges" to post 7 covers of my favorite books, without a comment. Of course, the person I challenged says, "I only read e-books." Pffffffffth.
Anyway, this is seriously my favorite yoga book. It also happens to be the first book I bought on the subject. As you can see, I've read it. Read it again. And read it again. I've read it out loud to my Yin classes over the years, and turned many people on to this author.
She's one of those teachers (and there are only a few) who, if she said, "Come and be a trainee of mine," I'd totally be gone to wherever she is.
Her style of writing is clear, unpretentious and down to earth. You feel like you can grasp some of the more esoteric aspects of yoga because she doesn't "dumb down" what she says. She's very precise in her use of language.
And her yoga story is compelling. You want to read more from her, and it feels like you're right in front of her when you're reading her books.
Anyway, it's far, far past my bed time and morning will come soon. Catch you soon!