Oct 11, 2012

Mocked by a penguin

So our trip to St. Louis was awesome. We did a lot of fun things but one of my favorites was visiting the St. Louis Zoo. I love the National Zoo in D.C. but I'm here to tell you the zoo in St. Louis kicks the a** of the one in D.C.

Part of that reason? They had penguins.
The only other time I have seen penguins in real life was when I visited the Boston Aquarium which was years ago.

This exhibit was so cool! The penguins outside were native to Chile which is why they are okay outside during the summers in St. Louis. We were so close to all the penguins - barely a few feet away - we could have touched them. (I've had several people ask me why I didn't, and my response has always been, "um, I didn't want to get arrested.")
After the outside exhibit, you walk into a building where they keep the temperature at 45 degrees because these penguins were native to colder habitats. (I also liked to think of them as royal because they were Emperor and King Penguins - ha!)

While looking at these penguins I said to Ben, "I can't believe how cool this is - we're so close we could be splashed!" (Mistake #1)
After looking at the "royalty," I turned to the opposite side of the exhibit to check out the other penguins. I took a picture and then put my back to these penguins to say something to Ben. (Mistake #2)

Apparently this penguin did not care for that, so he dove and splashed water all over me! Then he stuck his head out of the water and made a sound that I swear sounded like a laugh.
I was so startled it happened I shrieked a little bit (which echoed very nicely, by the way), and then started laughing because really, what else was I going to do? I wasn't soaked by any means but water got on my hair, my glasses, and my sweatshirt, and it was chilly in there!

I had Ben take a picture of me post-splash...and this expression is about the time I realized there was probably penguin poop in that water...and now it was on me. (Mistake #3)
Well played penguin, well played indeed.
There was a puffin exhibit as well - they were tiny and adorable but it smelled worse over there than it did near the penguins (or maybe it was just me), so I didn't get great shots because I hurried out to dry off.

Have you ever seen a penguin in real life? How close were you able to get? Have you ever been mocked by an animal at a zoo?


Suburban Sweetheart said...

Love this! I used to adore the penguin exhibit at the now-defunct Sea World in Ohio growing up.

Annie said...

Awesome! Penguins are Claire's favorite animals. She can tell you all the different kinds.

We considered having our wedding and reception at the Newport Aquarium (near Aunt Susie's house). For extra $$ (it was already expensive!!) we could have 3 or 4 penguins come up to the reception in a wagon and greet people! I feel I have let you down :( ;)

Amber said...

SO CUTE! I'm pretty sure I've seen penguins at an aquarium before, maybe it was Sea World in San Diego. I don't remember but I love penguins, they are the cutest thing!

Cathy said...

Oh my gosh, that is so stinkin cute! You and the penguin that is:) Still can't get over how different but great the bangs are!!!

Lauryn said...

I can't say that I've ever been mocked by an animal at the zoo, and it's definitely been too long since I've visited the Detroit zoo. I've seen penguins, but only from behind plexiglass. It would be so neat to see them up close!

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

I grew up going to the St. Louis Zoo - I love that place. We were there the same day as you (go figure!), but went to the "River's Edge" area. Last time we were at the St. Louis Zoo, it was 95 degrees and there was a long line to get in that penguin exhibit. No doubt, we stood in it for those few minutes of relief!

Also? The St. Louis Zoo is constantly ranked as one of the best in the country. (2012 Trip Advisor rankings place it as #2: http://www.multivu.com/mnr/49267-tripadvisor-popularity-index-top-10-zoos-in-the-united-states).

Lucy The Valiant said...

I love penguins!! Especially now that I know they will laugh at people they've splashed!

Anonymous said...

Life lesson: Never turn your back on a penguin.

I've seen Penguins a few times before and they're super cute when they're not splashing you with water.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Fun! That zoo is really awesome. I went with Nora when I visited her 2 Januarys ago. I loved the penguins, but i have to say, the smell about made me lose it!! But they are so so cute!!

Kelly (She Wears a Red Sox Cap) said...

Haha I absolutely LOVE penguins! They are the best! I have seen them only at the Boston Aquarium too. My favorite penguin is the Rockhopper- the one with the yellow cool hair do type thing haha. They are awesome- I think they should wear sunglasses and then they would definitely be the coolest.

Stephanie Lynch said...

So glad you had such a good time at the Saint Louis Zoo. What's not to love about penguins, right? Hope your future travels in Missouri are just as memorable.

Safe travels,
Stephanie Lynch

PR Manager
Missouri Division of Tourism account

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