A Walk in the Park (Ch 14)
Welcome back to our FairyBlogTale, dear reader. The author has been remiss in updates recently, what with Real Life rudely intruding into the flow of this blog. Her apologies. If you are new to this air-headed venture, please scroll to the bottom of this post of a complete list of Chapters. Basically the author is re-living her family’s visit to The Land of The Free, through some rose-tinted time-enhanced goggles. This Chapter sees our Family taking a walk in The Park. Grab your beanies, a hot Milo, and walk with us…
After returning to earth, having visited some Noo Yawk clouds the previous day, our FairyBlogTale Family decided to stick to terra firma and explore a certain park on their fifth day in The City.
Now one might think that a park – a collection of trees and paths and usually-grassed areas – might not hold enough entertainment for an entire day. And mostly, one might be correct. But not in THIS park. Central Park.
Especially when it had gone and got itself all gussied up in a snow cloak…
It was surreal and (she has said it before, she will say it again) the Mother felt it looked so perfect it seemed like a movie set. Serendipity or When Harry Met Sally or Elf or… well take your pick really. Apparently it’s the most filmed park in the world. (There, you are SET for the next Trivia Night. Don’t say I never give you anything!) This park is billed by those who showcase it, as ‘The Heart of the Island at the Center of the World’. If you don’t believe me, click the link.
And as the Family walked in wonder along the salted footpaths and took in the iced branches and Manhattan backdrop and clear blue sky, the thought that perhaps the only thing missing was wildlife. How wrong they were…
Oh look! A picturesque entry to… a zoo!
Of course the Prince and Princess were all agog for some animals. (The skyscraper novelty had well and truly worn off for them.)
Now for all you non-Noo-Yawkers and non-Americans out there… you know the movie Madagascar? Where the lion and the giraffe are all citified and how no clue about being wild? Well, the Central Park Zoo (despite not many giraffes or lions being in evidence) is ALL THAT and more.
They took in the Monkey Love (with looming apartment complexes).
And admired a Darling Deer-like critter tip-toeing through some city snow… then the family plunged through some glass doors and into a new world of Fake Humid Rainforest.
Surreal within the surreal. Tropical within the Arctic. They almost felt like they had been teleported back home…
(Well, reasoned the Mother as she stripped off coats and gloves and beanies in the oppressive radiating heat, I suppose Batman was from Gotham, which is in fact New York. So this could have been a fantasy-inspired reality! The heat was starting to get to her…)
There were little lorikeets (parrots/tropical feathered creatures)…
Vibrant, multicoloured, fabulous birds …
Birds who looked for all the world like moving illustrations of themselves from the latest 4D childrens’ flick… perhaps the sweating perspex enhanced the colours, figured the Mother as the family sought to escape the heat (for which they had NOT dressed) back into the chilled outside air.
Here the family met Gus and Ida.
Two Polar Bears, who were right at home in the snow and who looked like they enjoyed their lunch.
Apparently they have their own air-conditioned dens for the warmer months. This fact did not surprise the family. Gus and Ida no doubt have their own agents and tables at Le Cirque too.
The Sea Lion basking in the sun seemed to sum up the Family’s Zoo experience: delightfully picturesquely strangely surreal…
…looking for all the world like he could leap out of his little piece of ocean and into someone’s living room.
The Prince and Princess (once again dressed like Eskimos) absorbed the Sea Lion with wide-eyed wonder.
Well, he seemed to say, would you LOOK at that! A couple of little Aussies, all teeth-chattery and boggle-eyed, aren’t they strangely cute?
And then he showed off his catching skills.
And the Family applauded. Because they had seen Madagascar and understood how New York animals are applause junkies.
It was then time to explore some more. So they strolled aimlessly along the bitumen paths quite sure that something would pop up to entertain them…
And they were right. It was called snow.
And NO, the novelty had NOT worn off that yet…
Thank goodness for their chequered Eskimo coats.
A cease-fire was called as That Bridge was chanced upon. And some posing was required by the Mother.
(These kids are nearly as well trained as Central Park sea lions.)
And then …
The Snowball effect took hold again…
And then SOMETHING caught the Mother’s eye…
And another something clip-clopped on by…
And the Mother went all gooey-eyed at the Father (the one who resisted the gondolas in Venice all those years ago) and he shrugged and strode off in search of…
…New York Horses.
Not this one (carrying a Cuban hero), but a steed (called Ernie) hauling one of THESE…
Doesn’t The Father look HAPPY about it? All that romance and knee rug action…
The Prince was more excited. All that snowball conflict had wearied his legs.
Ah, that is better. Perhaps it was the subtle note behind the driver that caused the earlier concerned expression? (The Family were still adjusting to all this TIPPING business).
The Mother and the Princess snuggled under the knee rug. They are girls, and allowed to revel in girly stuff like that.
And there was lots to look at. Famous things.
Things the Mother has since forgotten the names of… THAT is how famous they are. (Or how vague she is.)
Whatever it is, this structure, the Family agreed, was VERY pretty. And familiar.
They clip-clopped by lots of snow and bridges and people dressed in black.
Before they emerged back into The City.
The Family couldn’t help but be bemused with the sight of horse-drawn carriages mingling with schools of yellow taxis.
Top-hatted drivers reverse parking white-feathered white horses amid the motorised mayhem of Manhattan. Naturally.
And so the Prince and Princess got their heaping helping of animal contact in The City. And once he was properly reverse-parked, they thanked Ernie.
And breathed that horsey smell deep and long.
You can take the country kids to the city, but who would WANT to take the country attitude (and appreciation) from the kids?
For those who missed earlier chapters: