Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Amazing African Adventure Day 6

This morning we loaded up the van and went to the Monte Casino Bird Garden. We wanted to get there early so that we could be the first ones into this bird enclosure. If you get there first, then they are hungry and want to come and eat the food you can buy to feed them. As you can see, they were really hungry and it freaked me out a little bit, b/c it was climbing up my chest and onto my neck. It actually ended up being a really cool experience once I realized they weren't going to hurt me. Just call me the crazy bird lady.
We walked all around the massive bird gardens and saw all sorts of various birds, reptiles, and other animals. It's neat to see so many variations of Heavenly Father's creations.
  At 11:00 we went and saw the bird show. Before it started, they were playing some fun music. Lexie is crazy and decided to go down to the front and start dancing around to get the little kids hyped up that were there on a field trip. The bird show as good and it was fun to see the tricks they've taught the birds to do.

At the end of the show, you can pay to have your picture taken w/ this fish eagle. It kind of looks like an American Bald Eagle. The professional picture of this is so good that it almost looks fake!
I kept saying I wish one of us had a Fitbit so we could see how many thousands of steps we've already taken today. The bird gardens are really well kept and are beautiful as you can see here.
 In one of the areas we were surprised to see a few of these lemurs just hanging around, not inside of a cage! This one even let me sit down right next to him. By this time it was getting really hot and it was time for lunch. We went and found Mom in the food court of the casino and we all got lunch. I tried the food at a restaurant called Anat. It looked like a Kebapci's type place, but it wasn't nearly as good as the Kebapci's I got all the time in Slovenija. 

 After everyone was well fed, we went to The Lion Park. This is the same place where that lady from New York was killed b/c she had her window rolled down too far and a lion pulled her out of the car and killed her! We were able to go into an enclosure that had 3 lion cubs (they are about 6 months old), and we got to touch them and interact w/ them.
 Look at Dad! He's so crazy that he sat down right in the middle of two of them. The last time he came here, one of the cubs playfully bit him and left a big abrasion for a few weeks! Luckily it was really hot outside and the lion cubs were tired and just wanted to sleep.
We keep saying to each other that we can't believe we are in South Africa and having these "bucket list" experiences. This is John and he was great about showing us how to interact w/ the lion cubs. All the signs say that you're only paying to be in there for 2 minutes, but we were probably in there for at least 15 minutes. It was so neat!
After our interaction w/ the cubs, we loaded in the van and drove through the Lion Park. It was exhilarating and scary at the same time to see the lions, cheetahs, and other wild animals just right outside the van window. We made sure to keep the windows rolled up at all times! After we spent an hour or two driving through the lion park we went and got a treat at the restaurant.
The final item on the agenda for today was a surprise from Mimi. We went back to the Monte Casino, which looks like you just stepped into Italy!
We went to dinner at a Chinese restaurant, and it was delicious. We got a bunch of different dishes to share, and we loved putting them on the lazy susan in the middle and sending them around the circle to each other.
After dinner we had some time to kill, so Papa & Andrew played a few games of chess w/ these big pieces. Papa's such a good teacher and would say, "Andrew, are you SURE you want to move that piece there?"
We were just oohing and aahing about how nice the casino was (we didn't go into the actual part of the casino where you can gamble). We felt like we had crossed over into Europe.
The big surprise of the evening was that Mimi had gotten us tickets to go see the play Singin' In The Rain. Her & Dad had seen it last month and loved it so much they wanted us to see it too. It was as good as a professional Broadway play! They even had it actually rain on the stage twice. The people sitting in the first 5 rows were given plastic rain ponchos b/c they got wet when the actors were dancing and would kick water out into the audience! It was a spectacular way to end a spectacular day!

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