Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Day 28: The Zoo, the zoo library, and an old friend

Wednesday morning, a small group of us headed over to the northeastern end of Regents Park, where the London Zoo is located. We had the whole morning to wander the zoo as we pleased, and a group of four of us stuck together on our particular adventures. We saw most everything: the gorillas, the pygmy hippos, the giant tortoises; the lions and tigers, the rain forest creatures, and the penguins. We particularly enjoyed seeing the otters. They were making a ton of noise (which sounded like mandrakes, a la Harry Potter), apparently as they were expecting their lunch in the next few minutes. Adorable!

After lunch, our group reconvened for a tour of the Zoological Society of London Library. One of the ZSL trustees talked to us during part of our tour, and he shared his vast knowledge of the library's photo collections detailing the zoo's history. I found it amusing to think about how photographing the animals at the zoo used to be laborious and somewhat rare. Contrast that with how nearly everyone present at the zoo was taking pictures of every animal... My, what a different world we've come to live in!

Following our tour, we decided a stroll through Regents Park to a different Tube stop would be enjoyable. I particularly liked seeing the lovely gardens again:

Everything at the zoo took up most of the day, but I had the pleasure of going out for dinner with my former camp director in the evening. He and his wife (my former camp counselor and a native Londoner) had arrived in the morning, and while Jade went out with friends, Adam wanted to get a bite to eat and stave off jet lag. I, off course, was happy to oblige. We went into Pizza Express, where I had a tasty goat's cheese, caramelized onion, and spinach pizza. Afterward we walked around London a bit, enjoying the nighttime sites. It never fails to amuse me, seeing folks from back home here! Good end to a good day.

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