Friday, July 16, 2010

Dallas Zoo Dollar Day

It was yesterday, and we went. We had gone before, but it must have been many years ago. I remember it being crowded, but not this crowded.

I wonder what the difference was? Like maybe last time I went, not so many people used the Internet on a regular basis. Or, maybe last time there weren't all these Hispanic people who don't speak English, and this time there were many ads for the event in Spanish. Or, maybe last time I went it was so long ago that there wasn't a DART station.

I don't know, but something must have been different.

Anyway, I knew that the zoo opened an hour earlier, and I wanted to get there earlier, but maybe not that early. We stopped for frozen drinks and left at about ten after eight. I think if I ever do this again, I'd have to leave maybe ten after seven. The cops were out directing traffic, or we'd never have gotten to our parking space. We were in the overflow parking, but at least we got an actual parking space. Other people who came later were directed to park on the grass. And I'm sure that they still had to pay seven dollars even for that.

And it was hot. It was really, really hot. I have been to many zoos before, and I knew to bring bottled water. I knew not to bring any drinks with a straw or a plastic lid that might become trash that ends up in an animal's cage. Still, with my bottle of water with no straw and a tightly screwed on cap, they would not let me into some of the exhibits. Leave your drink here, and you can collect it on your way out. Right. There's a zillion bottles of water, mostly the same size, mostly with blue labels. If there's nothing special about your bottle of water, how are you supposed to find yours. You'll get someone else's by mistake and catch whatever germs they have.

I ended up finding some other hiding place for my water bottle and going in a bit later.

And we road the monorail thing, which we rarely do. It was an extra three dollar ticket, which I think is at least half of what it normally is. I'm not sure how long the wait was, but it was about three times as long as what I thought. I looked at the line and thought, that's long, but not too bad. But of course that wasn't the whole line, and there was another bridge or something that you wait in line past where I was looking, and still a bit more of a line past that. But, after you wait in line that long already, you keep waiting. I think it takes about a hundred people at a time, and there were at least two trains going, so we did eventually get on.

A bit after our ride, there was an announcement that due to the high temperatures and high humidity, they would close the ride at 1:30. It was nearly that time when they made the announcement. And the announcement made no sense. What did the temperature and the humidity have to do with the operation of the monorail? It made standing line very unpleasant, and it would have been nice of them to warn people how long they would be in line, but closing the thing because it's hot seemed a bit silly. It is hot all summer. What does that have to do with anything.

We did wonder if maybe they had sold so many tickets that they just couldn't sell anymore. But then why didn't they just announce that they were sold out?


There was the regular overpriced zoo food, and then there was special dollar day food: dollar hot dogs, dollar sodas, dollar chips, dollar cotton candy (the kind that is made ahead of time and sold in a tub), dollar popcorn, etc.... We decided not to stand in line for the hot dogs or spend that much money on other stuff. We were tired and ready to leave soon anyway. We decided to look at a few more things and then head to Chili's for soup and salad and chips and salsa.

I just really wanted to see the giraffes. They have it set up now that you can get up close to them and pay to feed them. But while the zoo in Abilene sells some animal food for a dollar or two, this place sold lettuce for five dollars. That would have been ten dollars for the both of us (after already spending two dollars to get in, seven to park, and six for the monorail), and there were already plenty of people feeding the giraffes, so we decided against it.

Well, I'm not sorry that I went, but I think it will be a while before I want to go back.


dmarks said...

The giraffe feeding thing is neat. I almost said cool, but "cool" not a word to use for a hot zoo for an activity that is temperature-neutral.

It's good that they had dollar food specials.

Absurdist said...

so, um, having lived in dallas for years and years, I can't believe they even said the words "high humidity", unless it had been raining recently.

Our humidity during the summer usually runs about 25%, except when it's been raining, and that's so unlikely at this time of year it's not even funny.

Did you get to ride the monorail?