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austin_dern

July 2017

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Mar. 11th, 2017

Lansing's Potter Park Zoo decorates the place every year for December. We'd hoped to get to it again, and first attempted to go a night they were closed. It turns out they were only open a couple days each week. We were far from the only people confused; when we went there the wrong time a half-dozen cars with people checking their smart phones were there, also trying to figure out what was going on.

So we went back the correct day and figured we'd check in the gift shop for --- it didn't matter; the place was closed and empty, apparently mid-renovation. All right. They also had rearranged the building in which they had activities and live-animal pettings, separating them into different rooms. They were, I think, the same kinds of animals as last year, such as the blue-tongued skink. Also a rabbit, the first one we'd been in contact with since our pet died. We held it together although when the docent mentioned this one was --- eight? nine? --- years old I nearly lost it.

The lights outside were fantastic, and it was not all that cold, a recurring theme this winter. No snow, which made the night less photogenic, as you'll see sometime, possibly by next December. (I've wondered if I should add another weekly photo entry to get a little closer caught up.) We set out without a map and realized we didn't really know the layout of the zoo so very well, and they had renovated it since the last time we'd been there. In the dark --- the holiday lights were the main illumination --- and unfamiliar terrain we got lost a fair bit. As it was we didn't get into the small bird house, although we did admire the peacock light fixtures in the windows outside it.

It's not a large zoo and yet somehow we took through to the end of the night to see it. This wasn't frightfully late; they closed at maybe eight or nine o'clock, and did it in the slightly spooky way of turning off the public-address songs, then turning off what lights there were. So that gave us a close to the Christmas-in-Lansing season that was as faintly creepy and ominous as we might hope.

Trivia: New Jersey refused to pay the Confederation Congress's September 1785 request for $3 million to support the national government. It was also the first state to appoint delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention. Source: New Jersey: A History of the Garden State, Editors Maxine N Lurie, Richard Veit.

Currently Reading: The Complete Peanuts, 1987-1988, Charles M Schulz. Editor Gary Groth.

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