More Zoo. Please note: all of this occurs while in the possession of giraffe crackers.

So the first animal Ray sees is a yellow-bellied marmot. Scratch that. She ignores the marmot. I’m a little nervous…perhaps she’s too young for the zoo.

The first animals Ray sees is a pair of oriental otters who come right up to the glass. Lee’s holding her up to the glass and can’t see her reaction. Finally I offer to hold her so he can watch her face.

We saw all kinds of monkeys, talked to a keeper about how to prevent glare when taking pictures through glass (we didn’t take a camera, though), watched various animals do things they don’t do in children’s books and, in fact, would have gotten The Jungle Book an NC-17 rating, fed the giraffes, made unfavorable comments about Iowa in the humid jungle-type rooms, and gawked.

The zoo trip was a lift, a joy, an affirmation of parenthood, and better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. We finished up with the petting zoo; she’s too young to pet responsibly, but she got a kick out of the geese. Honkahonka honk honka! It must have sounded like someone laughing to her. She laughed back.

I think one of our duties as parents is to keep Ray supplied with opportunities for wonder.