A trip to the zoo is so much fun with a two, if you have never had the pleasure of doing it than borrow a willing toddler (with parental permission) and head out to your nearest animal park. The key to having fun with a toddler is follow, follow, follow! All too often I see parents and caregivers rushing children on to the next animal, "Come on honey, it's time to see the zebra. Hurry along", in some frantic pursuit for more. Why? Who needs to see all the animals in one day? Bodhi will occasionally spend two hours visiting three animals. We always begin with the lion. Bodhi becomes stock-still staring at his regal friend and peppering his observation with "OOOOOH, OOOOOOH, look at that Mommy", in response to something unexpected.Next, our beloved elephants, with faces lined by wisdom and a movement that suggests a "no hurry" attitude that appeals to the toddler and busy mother, both.
Finally, we wind our way to the penguins. This is generally a 45 minute visit. Bodhi watches, laughing wildly, as the tentative swimmers line the rock lip overlooking the water. They bob and lean, they rock and suggest an impending leap, then lean back again and preen. Bodhi loves this, almost as much as the wild freedom of a swimming penguin. On our way out, we may glimpse an animal to explore another day.On the way home, we both feel so happy inside, so peaceful... like we made a few good friends and weren't in any rush to do so.