Night Safari

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The other night I and some friends I made here went to the Night Safari. It’s a drive thru zoo that you can go to in the dark. I’ve got mixed feelings about zoos in general, but there’s no doubt I enjoyed seeing nocturnal animals during their waking hours.

The scariest were the two foot fruit bats that hung from the ceiling of a cage went inside of. They swayed above our heads and we stared straight up at them. Suddenly, one let go and dropped at us. Everyone ducked and yelped as the thing caught flight and glided past.

In another cage we entered were fox like squirrely guys jumping from tree to tree. I read the sign and it said “flying fox”, then I looked up and one was flying foxing at my head. He was spread eagle and his webbed body was coming right at me. Somehow he landed low on a tree trunk across the path with my eyeballs in his cheeks. I think he landed on the tree anyway, because I couldn’t see him. Since he had my eyeballs in his cheeks. From when he ripped them out. My eyeballs.

No, but really, he did fly right at my head. I think he even said “Hey you came for a show buddy, check this out! YEEEEEEEOOOOOOW!” If my job was the crazy-newly-discovered-animal-namer, then I probably would have called him a kinda-flying-fox or crazy-parachuting-squirrel, because it was much more of a slow motion fall than it was flight.

I’ve seen lions, tigers and bears before, but never up as close as I saw the leopards. There were three of them. One sat right up against the glass as the other two paced back and forth They’d swat at each other, sometimes escalating to a short wrestling match. The one would always return to his spot against the glass.

I knelt down on the ground, so my head was at the same level as his. I’m not sure if he was a male, but he seemed tough, so that’s what I’m going with. I just stared at him, less than a foot away. He looked out through the window, right past me. I remembered looking at my dog when we lay on the floor together. When I could tell that he knew I was looking into his eyes, but he wouldn’t look into mine. There’s something sensed about dominance.

It was powerful to be so close to a giant leopard, and even more powerful to be able to stare at him while he looked off into the distance. He would look past me on the right, then swoop his eyes over my head and look past me on the left. I stayed, I put my head against the glass, an inch from his nose and finally he turned slowly then stopped. Wiith his giant black eyes he looked straight inside me. He held for seconds, but it felt longer. It was awesome to look him in the eyes, but what I loved, what I’ll remember forever, is the massive wild predator staring into my eyes. It was powerful.

I could have taken him though.

2 Thoughts on “Night Safari”

  1. gert Says:

    i like that this post was zany.

  2. -eric- Says:

    i’ll second the zanyness… the hell do you spell zanyness properly? I think i spelled it wrong, but I’m sticking with it for consistency’s sake and because I’m full of zanyness……zanyness

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