monitor lizards & childlike awe

Yesterday I went to Busch Gardens with my friend Jenna. We went with the express purpose of petting kangaroos and wallabies.


Don’t you just want to pet him? It was pretty cool, but here’s the anecdote.

After we pet the marsupials we wandered around the park to see the cheetahs and meerkats. And finally we made our way into the section with Busch Garden’s Animal Ambassadors and the Cave of Curiosities. I found out that Burmese Pythons and Boa Constrictors make me want to hurl. And bats totally freak me out.

We passed a family standing in front of the monitor lizards. They were surprisingly active when we passed by and the little girl in the family persistently declared that one of them was attempting to escape.

don't want to pet him

It made me chuckle and remember that iconic scene in Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone when Harry visits the zoo and releases the python. I haven’t talked much about Pottermore here yet (it’s sort of unique and difficult to describe) but this scene was fairly cool in the “experience”.

The zoo, the aquarium, MOSI, all of these places you visit as a kid and are amazed are so much fun for me to revisit. It’s like caffeine for my imagination. I’m overwhelmed with fanciful ideas and nostalgic memories from my childhood. Theme parks are designed to entertain but I think they also do a good job of revealing the bits of everyday magic. The sort we forget and often pass over.

Speaking of everyday magic – Publix Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream is just perfectly delicious and magical. I’d suggest dipping out a scoop or two and settling in for some evening reading.


A Re-cap of the Beach Week

the three books I finished

At this point it may seem a little cruel to dwell on the fact that I spent last week on vacation. But I did want to give you guys a little update on some of the progress made. Plus, I’m sure you’ve all experienced that refreshing feeling you get from a week of doing pretty much nothing.

I finished three of the eight books I took with me (including Anna Karenina;well I took her with me, but I didn’t finish her). In order it was One Day, The Joy Luck Club, and The Book Thief. So, you’ll have those reviews to look forward to in the coming weeks.

I also got on a blogging frenzy and wrote posts halfway into next week. Which isn’t much further ahead than I normally am, but if you remember a couple weeks ago I was afraid I wouldn’t have anything interesting worth saying, and that little burst proved me wrong.

I also spent a lot of time interweb lurking. Thanks to my friend Catie I found Books of Adam. She said he’s her favourite blogger (which gives me something to work toward). I did however read his entire blog in one evening. There were a few other blogs I spent some time on. As well as making sure my Goodreads profile was up to date. And then there was that pesky beach I just had to spend some time on in effort to even out my ridiculous tan-lines.

The thing I’m perhaps the most stoked about was getting into Pottermore. People keep asking me what it is and I’m finding it difficult to describe. It’s best if you just watch J.K. explain it herself. Anyway, I will be a beta tester for the site and am anxiously awaiting the cyber equivalent of my Hogwarts Acceptance letter. (Sidenote: Lauren Gilmore, everytime I think about your plan with Chad to train an owl I bust up laughing).

Finally, Tuesday night last week we went to a show at my church called Jam Fest featuring my younger sister, her boyfriend’s band All I Am, and a friend of our’s band named I Surrender. It was a great little show. The kids all seemed to have a blast. And I felt like I was walking around like I was 16 again.

It was a good week. And now I’m glad to be home feeling refreshed and ready to go. The next couple of weeks will be exciting for me. I’m also participating (for the first time) in the twentysomethingbloggers Blog Swap. So that will be very cool.

Now, I’m gonna watch Wilfred and then head to work. Fingers crossed it doesn’t rain today…