Off to the zoo this morning. Fortunately, Rory has passed on some free entrance tickets that he’d acquired from somewhere, so that was a considerable financial help. It was a very pleasant zoo, + there weren’t too many other people around, even tho’ this was Holiday Monday – the weather was a bit bleak, but then MOTAT (which we visited later) was pretty crowded, so I don’t really know why that was. Obviously, I can’t list all the animals we saw, so here are just a few highlights. We saw our first kiwis – of the feathered variety – + a more preposterous bird you could not imagine. The stupid thing looks just exactly like the cartoon they have of it. It’s as tho’ a duck really looked like Donald, or a mouse like Micky. They had a really remarkable little chameleon-like creature there too, whose name I cannot recall, which just blended in exactly with its background, whether it be brown, green, yellow, whatever. The real stars of the place were the monkeys, who put on a wonderfully entertaining display, wrestling, arguing, hiding, fighting. Apart from those, the animals were much as most zoo fare: lions, leopards, bears, an elephant, giraffes, none of which were very lively. Marge kept going on about how wonderful the otters had been the last time she’d been, + when we got to the otter pen there was not one to be seen. You winsome, you lose some.
So, after some tea + a meat pie, we moved on to MOTAT. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any free tickets for this one, + they rushed us $3.20 apiece. The price of knowledge. MOTAT was alright, but it could have been wonderful. There were some things working, operating, but everything should have been. The computer room, for example, had a few computer innards laid out dormant behind glass panels. Unsurprisingly, the place was deserted. Why do museum proprietors show such a lack of imagination? You would think they’re all fossils, like their exhibits, dead + lifeless.
We returned home in the afternoon, + I spent my time recording some music, so that we’d have something different to listen to. I made up one mixed tape, which I christened “Kiwi” in honour of our funny friend, + then a David Bowie tape, + a classical tape, so a fair little variety there. In the evening, the 4 of us were invited over to Herman’s mum’s for dinner. She is a very nice + active old lady, who still speaks with a very strong Dutch accent. She is widowed now, but has 10 children to keep her busy. We had a pleasant meal, after which another of her sons + his wife called round. Since we’d earlier met yet another of her children, this meant we’d met 5 out of the 10, or 50%.
After this, Herman + Marge drove us back to Rory + Eva’s. We stopped off on the way at One Tree Hill, a famous + appropriately-named landmark of the city, but the wind whipping across was bone-chilling, so we didn’t stay long. We sat + chatted with Rich, Rory + Eva for a while, mainly about what sort of a job we could try for, + then bed.
Incidentally, you will remember I wrote some time ago that I was feeling very itchy, especially at night. Well, the situation has not improved. In fact, it has grown considerably worse, + Val has been suffering from the same thing. It has been pretty bad, actually, + has become rather embarrassing since I feel the need to scratch a lot, + the itch is often unbearable. We have resolved to see the doctor, to see what he can do for us.
More conventional sight-seeing – the zoo and the museum – which passed the time pleasantly enough (there’s that word again.) So the most notable comment is probably about our medical condition, and at last a determination to do something about it.