Wednesday, November 02, 2011

The Reston Zoo

Growing up, one of our very favorite family trips was a visit to the Pet Farm Park in Virginia.  I absolutely adored that place, in spite of a very vivid memory of being pecked on the head by an emu.  (To this day, emu's give me the creeps.  Seriously, they are super creepy.)  The farm had animals of all kinds, and began my love affair with animals of all kinds.  I rode my first pony there, patted elephants and fed baby goats and lambs.  I desperately wanted a goat for years and years, and my dreams came true when I was teenager and my parents let us bring home one of the neighbors' baby goats.  We named him Go-T, and we loved him.  He ate my corsage during pictures on the night of my senior prom.

The Pet Farm Park has since been renamed the Reston Zoo.  We usually went there for the Easter Egg hunt as kids, and my yearly quest was to find the "golden egg" during the hunt.  The kid that found that egg got to go home with some kind of special prize, but I can't remember what it was.  I never did find that egg, much to my yearly disappointment.

This year, my family took the kids for their Halloween trick-or-treat event and I got to watch my own little one enjoy a place I loved so much as a child.  That golden egg?  I finally did find it, but it was bigger and greener and wigglier than I ever would have expected.  It also had pigtails.  The prize was so much smiling that my face hurt by the time we piled back in the car to go home.

As it turns out, the Reston Zoo has really stupid animals.  What kind of goat eats out of the palm of a dragon?

I mean, I get that it was an awfully cute dragon.  But still, goats!  Good thing you're not wild goats or you'd be toast.  Literally.

Taking her cues from the goats, Bean had absolutely no qualms in petting and cuddling this enormous tarantula.

I was happy to remain a safe distance away behind my camera.  Yeesh!

This guy seems to finally have a little healthy fear.  Or perhaps incredulity?

The zoo had little booths set up where the kids could trick-or-treat, so our little dragon had her first chance to try it out.


Next, we kept enjoying the animals before heading out on a hayride to the pumpkin patch.

Dragon in sheep's clothing.

Yoda dragon?

I guess it turned out that our little dragon is a vegetarian.  That's why the goats weren't afraid!
 Bean wanted to a ballerina, and ballerina she was.

My favorite from the day.

My mom and I both have always desperately wanted a pet deer.  The Reston Zoo had two.  I wanted to steal them, but the wouldn't fit in my pocket or even my stoller storage.  I'm still not over it.

Those fawns were every bit as soft and sweet and precious as all of your wildest imaginings.  They even made the most endearing little squeaking sounds, like a newborn baby.  Plus, they were soft.  And warm.  And cuddly.

A golden egg day, for sure.      

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