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Sunday, November 30, 2008

We're going to the zoo zoo zoo...

Backdated: 9th November
Updated between the period of 1st - 12th December 2008

This is just a stub.

I'd better update this before November ends. Cyn has been waiting for an update for soooooo long. I've been bz playing around with photoscape and it's damn fun to edit the photos!

Unfortunately, I'm not at home now and all my photos are not here.

Gotta catch some sleep now... My nights are getting longer and longer as the days pass. Watch this space. Enjoy your Sunday!


5 reasons why I took so long to update this post:

1) Most of the photos were taken using cyn’s camera.
Shout out to cyn, “Next time I ban you from using your camera if you are gonna take 10 years to upload the photos!!!” =P

2) I was too absorbed with playing around with Photoscape and editing the photos.
This software is addictive, I tell you.

3) I was busy researching on wedding-related stuff during my free time.

4) It was composition marking week the week before. With 4 classes of compositions to mark, I could barely breathe.

5) I would be typing the draft in dribs and drabs and whenever I had the time, I did not have my lappie with me to blog.


Zoo outing on 9th November 2008

Cyn and I had great fun with the kids at the zoo! They were really very well-behaved, sweet and patient that day and that makes them all the more loveable. As I’m typing this, I’m already missing them.

We arranged to make our way down separately and to meet at the entrance itself. When I saw cyn emerging from the loo with jase and char in the twin pram, they squealed in delight and had those cheeky grins on their faces. I couldn’t help breaking into a broad smile when I saw the 3 of them.

Aside… My thoughts on prams
First thing I asked cyn was why she had brought the pram out. For people like me who cannot stand inconsiderate parents with prams outdoors, I really could not imagine being one of those soon to be inconsiderate pram pushers then. Moreover, I’ve always thought that prams are for toddlers.

Cyn explained to me that since she had gone out alone without the maid, a pram would be very convenient for her as she had to handle 2 kids all by herself before she met me. In addition, the kids would get tired of walking around and may ask to be carried. She certainly didn’t want us to be carrying them for hours when we each have our barangs to carry as well. She was also afraid of either of them falling asleep as the zoo outing would actually be disrupting their afternoon nap.

What a lot of logical reasons! I’ve never ever thought of all these whenever I bump into parents with prams. Cyn added that her pram is really wonderful. All the big bags of barangs could just be hung onto it, dirty clothes or wet shoes could be stashed into the basket below the pram while water bottle could be inserted into the cup holder for easy access.

I became a pram convert from that day onwards.

When I went back to tell kh about my conversion, he insisted that we have to train up carrying our kids outdoors in future and not be a nuisance to others by using prams.



Back to the story…

Poor char char vomited on the way to the zoo. I guess the cab ride was too long. She was still so cheerful.

I asked her, “How are you?”

She laughed and answered, “I’m three years old!”

Diao… Wahahaha…

I asked them what their favourite animals were and both of them answered unanimously, “LION!!!”

They excitedly told me all that they knew about lions and were really very eager to see the lions.

“Later when we get to the lion’s enclosure, we must all go ‘RAWR’ very loudly ok?” I said jokingly.

They were so thrilled at the idea and agreed immediately.

We chose the wrong day to go to the zoo. It was PACKED! Vehicles were parked along the roadside all the way till the signboard by the main road. That was how crowded the zoo was. We only realised that it was PUB’s family day when we saw the banner and signboards around the ticketing area.

What bad luck!

However, it turned out that we chose the right day to go to the zoo coz this nice Malay lady gave us four adult tickets when she saw that we were about to get into the queue at the ticketing booth. We figured that she and her family had decided not to go ahead with the trip due to the humid weather and were there just to collect the freebies.

What good luck!

Even though “other people’s rubbish became our treasure” (loosely translated from the Chinese saying), we were really thankful to her. Cyn told the kids to thank the nice Malay lady.

“Thank you aunty,” they chorused like kids with good manners.

The whole family smiled at them and thought they were really very cute. Cyn and I were beaming in our hearts.

Crazy godma and the kids on the croc

Us with the parrots

Pitcher plant

The kids listened wide-eyed as we explained to them about how the plant gets its nutrients by consuming insects.

Heliconia... The firecracker-looking plant

Proboscis monkeys

I’ve heard many people saying that the proboscis monkey’s nose is as big as its dick. I wonder if it is true.

A pair of male and female birds at the proboscis monkey’s enclosure.

Cyn captured our 背影 (bei4 ying3).

The cheeky monkeys with the monkey

I told the kids that one of my favourite animals would be the otter as otters are really cute. I was so eager to show them how cute otters are.

That was the first time I saw otters huddling together and sleeping in a messy pile.

Otters using my cam zoomed in to the max

Otters using cyn’s cam zoomed in to the max


Aside… My thoughts on Canon cameras
When I saw this shot from cyn’s camera, I decided not to boycott Canon yet again. Actually, I think it is due to the fact that her camera is pink that I decided Canon isn’t too bad at all. We were standing at the same spot but the difference in zooming is huge as evident from the photos.

I recall the time when I asked the Canon sales promoter staff why Canon didn’t carry pink cameras. With great confidence, he declared that Canon cameras are so good that they don’t need such pink gimmick to entice consumers into buying their products.

I swear that he had this you-look-like-a-f**king-bimbo smirk on his face when he made that claim. I told him that he was bloody wrong as I happened to know many females who would buy pink cameras just coz they’re pink. I also added that they should change their marketing strategy to bring in even more sales from the fashion conscious.

Imagine how I scoffed at Canon when I saw the debut launch of their pink cameras a year later. I would consider a Canon for my next camera, provided they still have newer pink models in future.


The magnificent white tigers

They were really beautiful. How I love the tigers.

We went on the weekend before the mauling incident happened. Anyway both cyn and I are on the tigers’ side. The tigers were merely reacting to their natural instinct. I pitied them for showing signs of stress after the incident. They were clearly shaken by all the noise and commotion as well as being hit by countless objects in a bid to stop them from hurting the man.

I sound very unfeeling but boy am I relieved to hear that it was a suicide and not an accident. It was tragic of the man to end his life in this manner but taunting the tigers to attack him didn’t warrant as much sympathy as compared to if he were to unfortunately fall to his doom by accident.

Poaching awareness

Approaching the pygmy hippos’ enclosure…

This tortoise has super long neck that it looks like a snake with shell and legs.

This fish looks like it came from the dinosaur era.

Jase was amused by the weird tortoise and strange looking fish.

The Pygmy hippos were really ugly.

A new animal to introduce to the kids – Desert warthog

Bearded dragon

I suspected it was a bearded dragon but some kid kept insisting it was an iguana that jase and char soon picked that up and said it was an iguana as well. I could not find any information around the enclosure. However, I was confident it was not an iguana since I know how an iguana looks like after the chit4 chit4 incident.

The emu...

...and its ear

Cyn was explaining to the kids the difference between an ostrich and and emu. She got excited to capture a shot of the emu’s ear when I told her that emus had them.

Soon, we stopped to have an ice cream break.

Dirty cat char char with ice cream all over!

After, eating his ice cream, jase asked for the map to see where we were. I was surprised that he could pick up map reading so quickly. I merely showed him where we were and with his tiny finger, he knew how to trace the path to get to the lions enclosure.

Jase loves to read map

Taking a rest at the shelter by the elephants’ enclosure…

Hot and tired… poor things!

Looking at the elephants

I love this picture very much.

I dunno why they were pretending to be scared of elephants!

Next, we caught the rainforest show. The animal show was so different from few years back. There weren’t penguins and seals anymore. Cyn and I felt so bad for telling jase that there would be penguins. Throughout the whole show, jase was just looking forward to see the penguins.

Just before the show, he had wanted to see the penguins but the crowd at the air conditioned enclosure was overwhelming. People refused to budge and so we thought it was fine as we could still see some penguins during the show.

Silly us… rainforest where got penguins???

While waiting for the show to begin, little char decided to give jase some sisterly love…

How sweet of little char! I love all those photos above.

The show was an element to test out our camera zoom function again.

Spider monkey from my cam

Spider monkey from cyn’s cam

Oopsy... One of the rare times I dunno an animal’s name!

Baby orang utan

Back to its mum

Orang Utans leaving the photo-taking area

Hot and humid day = lazy polar bears

It’s a wolf, not a fox.

When we were trying to capture a good shot of the wolf. I made a comment with “la” inside and jase went, “Orh… godma Jolene said ‘la’.”

I was quite blur until cyn explained to me that she doesn’t allow them to end their sentence with la, leh and lor. If anyone was caught doing so, his or her ear would be pulled. I had to bend down to let jase pull my ear. Sobz…

By this time, cyn and I were quite tired from pushing the pram up and down slopes and even carrying it down the stairs. Little char had fallen asleep while jase was pretty much awake.

Cyn: Jase ah. Can mummy and godma sit on the pram then jase and charmaine push us?
Jase: Of couse not.

He felt very baffled by what cyn had said. Hahaha… He must be wondering how on earth we adults could squeeze into the pram.

Stopping for a rest by the flamingo enclosure…

Jase played with the 7-Up bottle and started to peel the label away and make himself a wrist band from it.

7-Up seemed to be their favourite drink that day. They’ve never tasted anything so delicious and refreshing before.

Don’t be mistaken, cyn doesn’t allow them to drink soft drinks. It just so happened that the day was really hot and humid and we hadn’t eaten a full meal the whole day. Hence, the sugar could actually give them some energy boost.

The zebras

Until that day, I’ve never noticed that zebras are much smaller than horses.

Cyn: Jase ah, is a zebra white with black stripes or black with white stripes?
Jase: “Huh?”

Cyn loves being bo liao. Hahaha… Maybe that’s why we click.

Btw, do you know how to tell a male and female zebra apart?

A male zebra is black with white stripes while a female zebra is white with black stripes.

Don’t roll your eyes at me. I learnt it from one of the river ride guides at HK Disneyland.

The smelly rhinoceros

Why is it that the rhino, zebra and other deer-like animals enclosures always stink?

We took another break and the kids started playing with cyn’s camera.

I snapped them…

Jase snapped me…

Oh man, I look naked here!

What happened before the I-snapped-them-jase-snapped-me photos were a series of videos.

Jase had accidentally switched to the video mode and there I was posing and posing like an idiot, waiting for the flash to come on.

Silly video

He was telling me that he wanted to take a very close picture of me.

I was showing them the photo I took of them and commenting that they were so cute w/o knowing that jase still had the camera on video mode.

There was also one on the rhino and I could hear jase asking about the rhino's "大便".

We didn’t realise the video blunder till I got the photos from cyn.

At the cheetah enclosure…

The meerkats

Another cute animal I like would be the meerkats but I only like them when they sit on their bum bums like the solo one up there. Hahaha… coz when they stand up tall on their hind legs, they don’t look as cute.

Finally! The sleepy king of the jungle!

Throughout the whole journey, the kids kept asking when they would get to see the lions. We made a wrong move by starting from the route which didn’t lead to the lions immediately.

The poor kids were really eager to see the lions. We kept telling them to cultivate patience each time they asked about the lions. Imagine their utter disappointment when they were greeted by only two pathetic lions sleeping away at a distance after all their patience.

I recall that there were more than ten lions at least when I saw them in a Primary 1 excursion eons back and not as few as two 6 years ago at the zoo with kh. What happened to the rest of them???

Seriously, I was also very disappointed especially after I saw their looks. I could tell they looked disappointed after all the anticipation. However, they did not even complain. They then started roaring at the lions and cyn had to tell them to keep quiet coz many visitors kept staring and laughing at them.

It then dawned on me that they had remembered what I told them right at the beginning, that is, to RAWR very loudly when we reached the lion’s enclosure. I felt bad for forgetting and told cyn they were merely doing what they’ve been told.

We decided to all go RAWR together!

By this time, there were really a lot of visitors milling around and smiling to us.

Everywhere we went, people took a good long look at cyn and me as well as the kids. It was really obvious but more on that later. =)

Once again, jase wanted to be a cameraman. We wanted him to be in the photo but he insisted on being behind the lens. Hence, the exasperated cyn said, “Fine! You go and be the cameraman. Don’t care you. All the pretty girls will take photo without you inside.”

He didn’t bother that he wasn’t in the photo as long as he could get his hands on the camera. Hahaha…

The pretty girls (taken by jase)

I like char’s pose here. She’s really a queen at posing.

The giraffes (taken by jase, except the one with him inside of coz)

Jase wanted a photo of the 2 mummies (taken by jase)

A very unflattering upward shot of us.

When jase was hogging onto the camera for too long, cyn said, “You look around and see. All the children’s mummys don’t let them play with camera. Only you’re so lucky, mummy let you play.”

After that, he returned the camera.

So guai!

Aside… My thoughts on the many people looking at us
As mentioned just now, many people looked at us wherever we went. I’m not being overly sensitive coz cyn also noticed it too. People would look at us, then at the kids in the pram, then at us again. Even after they walked past us, they would still turn back to look. Some of them looked at the pram first with smiles on their faces. Then, when they looked at us, they would look at the kids in the pram again.

We were trying to figure out if:
1) They have never seen a twin pram before.
2) They were trying to check if the kids in the pram were twins.
3) They were wondering if the kids were too big for the pram. (It's not true coz there were kids around their size sitting in prams too.)
4) They were trying to figure out if the kids were siblings.
5) Probably after point 4), they decided that the kids were not siblings and were trying to guess whose kid belongs to whom by matching the resemblance to cyn and my faces.
6) They were wondering what we two ladies were doing with these kids without a fatherly figure around.

Till now, we are still clueless.


Jase pointing to the map

I like it whenever jase asked for the map and study it like a little man.

Painted face… Baboon

The various animals in a photo summary

I realised that there isn’t Children’s World anymore. Sigh… I’ve never visited the children’s world before.

At the pony ride area…

Horses & ponies

Our plucky char was very eager to go on the pony ride. Jase was a little apprehensive but decided to take it on so as not to lose out to his sister (this is what we feel). Cyn mummy made sure they really wanted before she went to queue up for the tickets.

Meanwhile, I kept them occupied by inputting lotsa knowledge about horses ands ponies as well as entertaining them with my bo liao antics yet again. Haha… Sensing Jase’s fear, I also calmed him down and told him how fun it would be to be on the pony. (Poor jase always have a kind of unfounded fear in him which is really difficult to overcome.)

After a long time, cyn finally came back with the tickets. Char was so happy yet urgent to go to the loo. While cyn brought char to the toilet, I took jase by the hand and waited in line for the pony ride.

There were many parents in the queue as well. Some of them had kids who were walking about while they stood in line. Despite calling them to go back, the kids continued to ignore their parents.

After a while, Jase let go of my hand and went to explore the bush beside the path. Not wanting him to wander around, I said, “Jase, come back here.” As quick as lightning, he returned with a cheeky smile and held my hand. I’m really not lying when I say I saw a few of the parents looking at us, green with envy. =) I was beaming when I saw that.

Each time a kid rode on the pony, I told jase to look at how much fun they were having and it was really nothing to be afraid of. Jase did not look too convinced. When cyn and char came back, the kids suddenly decided they did not want to sit on the pony anymore. It could be due to the fact that the kid before us was quite afraid and was crying.

Trying to encourage them to overcome their fear, we told them to at least have a go on the saddle rather than to just give up and leave without even trying. We coaxed them but to no avail. They ended up crying. The 2 guides at the ride said it was fine and that the money could be refunded.

However, Cyn got pissed with them.

Pissed that they backed off after telling her that they had wanted to sit on the pony.
Pissed that they backed off even after asking them if they were sure and they said “yes”.
Pissed that they backed off after queuing up so long for the tickets.
Most importantly, pissed that they didn’t try to overcome their fear.

I told cyn to cool down but she said she had to show them some temper or they would think that it was no big deal. She pretended (or was it pretending) to be angry and walked away in a huff.

The poor kids stuck closely to me coz mummy was angry. I told them the reason why mummy was angry and they had guilt written all over their faces. They looked really innocent and cute that I felt like hugging them.

At the water playground…

This is a new attraction added to the zoo recently. We learnt of it from the newspaper and so cyn came well-prepared with their swimsuits.

Look at their happy faces

Char char

Having fun pretending to swim

Aside… My thoughts on safety and supervision at the water park
There were many older kids (primary school age) who were really quite rough. They were probably having so much fun that they didn’t look out for younger children who may be hurt by their thoughtless acts. Many of them ran around the shallow pool with water splashing high. Jase and char had water splashed into their noses a few times. Each time it happened, they would have a “wanna-cry-coz-they’ve-been-bullied-face”. However, cyn would quickly put a stop to that by telling them it was fine and all they had to do was to stand up so as to prevent more water from splashing into their faces.

Some of the kids ran around without looking down at the pool to see if there were younger children around. Some were playing catching and did not watch their steps. They almost stepped onto the younger kids a few times.

For these children, the parents did not supervise them and left them on their own to play while they probably go have a meal or something around the vicinity. I understand that it’s really unnecessary to keep an eye on such big kids as they couldn’t possibly come to any harm. However, they did not realise the potential hazard their kids were posing to the younger children.

Also, I hope the zoo does a daily mainteneance of the water park. If you look closely at the water, it’s actually quite dirty. One or two inconsiderate kids went into the pool with their slippers on!!! A bunch of teenagers and all the older kids wore their clothes into the pool and were making a hell lota noise. They were really excited to catch the water fall from the huge bucket every few minutes.

Ok, I don’t deny them of their fun but please at least watch out for the safety of younger children. I had a good mind to give the kids a firm warning and telling them to watch their steps.


Back to the story…

Overall, they really had so much fun that they were quite reluctant to leave the pool. Cyn had to tell them that I needed to go off earlier before they decided to pluck themselves off from the pool.

After toweling dry and changing into clean clothes, we had our meal at the KFC nearby. It was really fun feeding the kids while eating at the same time. At least it was fun for this godma who seldom sees them. I dunno if I would find it very fun feeding my own kids everyday next time. Hahaha…

We really enjoyed ourselves at the zoo!

Loving cyn and my godkids…

P/S: This post has many grammatical and spelling errors. Please bear with me... I'm typing with my eyes half closed.


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