The day after Violet’s birthday we took a long-awaited trip to the Louisville Zoo. Last year, we had planned to visit the Cincinnati Zoo — I even had reservations at a nearby hotel — but the brakes on my car went out the day before we were to leave and we took a “stay”-cation instead. I was very excited to see how Vi would react to all the animals. What would she think when she realized they’re not all cute and cartoon-ish like in her picture books? Last week I checked out of the library a book titled Animal ABC and several of the animals’ photographs actually frightened her, especially the toothy, scaly alligator.
It turns out none of the zoo animals scared Violet. Of course, she didn’t seem to be too interested in a lot of them. Her favorite part of the zoo was getting to run along the pathways, arms and legs pinwheeling comically as she joyfully pranced to and fro, just far enough ahead of Daddy to make him nervous. Her second favorite part was getting to ride a butterfly on the carousel, which she has excitedly reminded me of several times since.
My friend and her daughter — just 3 months younger than Violet — went with us and helped to make the day really special. Our two little girls are starting to interact more and I got a few really good pictures of them together. It wasn’t until we were heading back to the front gates, preparing to leave, that the inevitable happened. Vi’s little friend was running and fell, sliding across the pavement. Ouch. There was blood, and in my opinion, when it comes to kids under 2, any blood is too much blood. Ever the documentarist (and scrapbooker), I took a picture of the aftermath. I won’t subject you to that, though. I’ll leave you with a pretty picture instead, taken just a few minutes earlier.
Oh yeah, and Vi’s newest word is “rhinoceros.”