Because of strep throat, the basketball game was not happening. Daughter 1 didn't want to go ice skating without her sister (so sweet; I'm not sure how this came to be), but she wanted to do something--anything--that got her down south so she could still get her cannoli. Quickly, she decided she'd like to go to the zoo. Just as quickly, The Dad decided I should go with her since I had been up all night with a moaning and groaning Daughter 2, and could use the break. I really could use a nap, but opted for the zoo because the place that has cannolis also has a killer Italian cream cake. (Anything for my thighs, yo.)
So, without make-up and with my wet hair (my dryer broke) stuffed in a stocking cap, we headed to the zoo. Daughter 1 directed us first to the sea lions, then to the chimps, then to the lions, then to the elephants, then to the snow leopards, then to the petting zoo. She was a tasmanian devil spinning us from one exhibit to another, spouting her Wikipedia-ish knowledge of each breed, its habitat, its eating habits, its mating habits, its shoe size, the color and smell of its bowel movements. On and on and on. I was tired. I sorta tuned her out, adding a "uh-huh" and a "really?" every so often.
She dragged me through the rainforest and the bear den and the flamingo park. I stopped her before she could take us to the snake house. I've seen Harry Potter; I know what happens in snake houses.
Prior to the giraffe observatory, a small African-like village is established so that we can walk through and see what it might be like to actually live next door to giraffes. The sounds of the village are piped in: rhythms, fire crackling, babies crying, singing, birds calling. The first hut has pictures of an actual African village and actual giraffes in the distance. The second hut has a display of various tools the villagers might use. And the third hut? Well, it had actual people in it!
As Daughter 1 and I slowly poked our head in the very small door, I glanced to the left at a blank wall and she glanced to the right, screamed and stepped back out of the hut. I then glanced to the right and saw the person standing right there next to me. I screamed a little bit, then said, "Oh my gosh. Sorry. You scared me." Then I noticed the person was behind the glass and was talking as well.
"What?" I said and tilted my head a little bit to hear her a little better. And she tilted her head, which was wrapped in a knitted covering.
Daughter 1 poked her head back in the hut at the same time as another person appeared beside head-wrapped person in the glass. Immediately, Daughter 1 and the new person began laughing. I glanced at Daughter 1 "What?"
She stepped fully in the hut and wrapped her arms around me at the same time the new person wrapped her arms around the knitted-hat person. "Momma!" she giggled, "We were screaming at our own reflections!"
Sometimes a momma needs a nap more than she needs a cannoli.