Belly Up*

Am not sick last night and sleep well so that’s a relief.

Have an excellent morning with Mum at Whipsnade. It’s freezing πŸ₯Ά: eight degrees and cloudy. We arrive at ten o’clock and the park is empty. Take my proper camera πŸ“Έ out for the first time since our last trip to Whipsnade in the summer when Lockdown was paused – so most of my photos are on there.

We have brilliant views of the lions 🦁, rhinos 🦏, hippos πŸ¦› and elephants 🐘. The camels 🐫, yak, alpacas πŸ¦™, marabou storks, cheetahs, white rhinos 🦏, zebras πŸ¦“ and tigers πŸ… are on my camera.

We sit outside at a picnic 🧺 table to eat our packed lunch: egg πŸ₯š sandwiches πŸ₯ͺ and cut up carrots πŸ₯• and cucumber πŸ₯’.

Mum buys me some tiger 🐯, lion 🦁 and zebra πŸ¦“ socks 🧦 in the shop and two Zoo pencils ✏️.

I’m Really Proud of myself for managing So Much walking. Feel so happy at Whipsnade with all my animals.

The vet phones when we get home. Fluffball is allowed out tomorrow so that’s good: he’s been moping around the house all week.

Tomorrow I have a pre-radiotherapy scan at the hospital πŸ₯ and Personal Training at one o’clock.

Happy Wednesday everyone!

*2010. By Stuart Gibbs. Children’s mystery novel in which Teddy Fitzroy and his friends investigate the suspicious death of a hippo.

Deadly Sins: Sloth*

What a day! Wake up at six o’clock and do my Astro Tarot Challenge post:

Finish the final, final edits to In Bloom with Mum. Fluffball thinks he’s helping by scratching the back of the chair πŸͺ‘ until I give him his second breakfast. Finally about nine o’clock the edits are done and I send the final version to my Agents. Phew πŸ˜… it’s not too late. They will just ensure that the designer has the correct version with which to work.

Work extra-hard at Pilates as there are just two of us plus our teacher. We do lots of strength and I use my new four kilogram weights, and many big ball and little ball exercises.

After class at 11.45am it’s off to the Zoo with Mum. It’s a hot, sunny 🌞 day: twenty seven degrees – and I wear my orange wig and my original Amazon tie-dye mini-dress (see above photos).

Starving on arrival at 12.45pm we have our sandwiches πŸ₯ͺ and I have a Magnum 🍨 for a rare treat. We take the tunnel to the far side of zoo and see the giraffes πŸ¦’ , okapis, zebras πŸ¦“ and otters 🦦. We even see the new baby sloth πŸ¦₯ if you look carefully above you may catch a glimpse of him on his mum’s tummy.

Taking the tunnel back we spend some money in the shop πŸ’· on some Zebra πŸ¦“ merchandise: a pencil case and notebook for my Astrology Degree πŸ“œ Course and a lemur water bottle. We buy my brother an African Hunting Dog t-shirt.

Meeting my chum at the tigers 🐯- see Asim sleeping above – and then we visit the lions 🦁 and I snap some great shots πŸ“· of Bhanu’s face. All good photos are on the proper camera. We see the blue and yellow macaws 🦜 and the Victoria Crowned Pigeons 🐦 in a heap together – see above.

Returning to the restaurant via Penguin 🐧 Beach, I have to meet Mum to go home at three o’clock. It takes us over an hour to reach home: the traffic is terrible – πŸš— πŸš™ πŸš—.

At home I crawl into bed, meditate and sleep. Mum wakes me up at six-fifteen.

Happy Monday everyone!

*2017. By Cheryl Bradshaw. A Sloth Monroe mystery: Book 1.

The Tiger’s Cave*

Wake up and watch Rafa winning his first round match. He has a beautiful fluorescent pink top.

Have a lovely walk in the sunshine with Dolly.

Then we go to the Zoo.

Walk through the African Bird Safari:

See Asim having his lunch:

When he pokes his paw into his toy to release the treats he looks just like Fluffball. Sumatran tigers πŸ… are critically endangered: there are only five hundred left in the wild so he needs a mate. It is not his fault that he killed Melati by mistake when they were mating.

We see the lions 🦁 sleeping:

Then we sit outside and have our lunch.

Crossing in the tunnel to the other side of the Zoo, we meet new baby Star the tamandua. They have an eleven month gestation period so he/ she – tamanduas are notoriously difficult to sex – is already advanced and we see her climbing about above her mum, feeding already.

Downstairs in Moonlight World we spend some time with the slender lorises. They pick their way slowly along their branches.

Then it’s time for the Pygmy hippos πŸ¦› – here’s Nicky:

The giraffes πŸ¦’:

The African Wild Dogs:

And then home.

When we arrive Fluffball is in. It’s a beautiful sunny day today but cold: about one degree.

Have a long sleep till six o’clock this evening.

Now am going to find something to watch on the television. There’s no phone or internet here as a car crashed into the box in the road.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

*2010. By Bill Rogers. A DCI Tom Caton Manchester Murder Mystery series, Book 3.

The Anteater Of Death*

Put on my leg weights and walk to the gym in the sunshine. Do four sets of all my weights.

Walk home from gym in the sunshine.

Meet Hannah, her smallest girl, her brother, his husband and their baby at the gym.

We see the lions:

And the langurs:


Walk through the Squirrel Monkeys:

And the ring-tailed lemurs:

The meerkats stand guard:

Wear my leg weights all day. We have such a good time at the zoo in the sunshine.

Book Pilates tomorrow and Tuesday at my gym near the flat. For the Practicum need to attend classes with several different instructors. Must remember my document for them to sign.

Have a small rest but can’t sleep. Now am watching Silent Witness and knitting.

Happy Sunday everyone!

*2008. By Betty Webb. A Gunn Zoo mystery, Book 1. Set in California. Stars Zookeeper Teddy Bentley.

The White Lioness*

Up early to feed a white lion at Paradise Wildlife Park. Here is Moto:

Get right up close to him and he takes pieces of meat out of my hand. He does a little bark to make me hurry up with the food which is very loud. It’s so exciting to be so close to him. He is so handsome and has such Big Paws 🐾. Look at those blue eyes. The white lionesses prowl around. One eyes my little cousin who is the right size for a snack. She stands very still and stares at him.

There is also a white tiger called Baikal:

He is sleeping as he had his big feed yesterday. The zookeeper tells us that they give the big cats a big feed every three days.

We see jaguars:

And snow leopards:

And there is a beautiful young cheetah. Here she is:

We see Misha the wolf having her lunch and belly rubs:

And we see these zebras:

There are also black and white ruffed lemurs, red ruffed lemurs and even black lemurs.

Heartily recommend the Paradise Wildlife Park. Book your day out there here:

Have a sleep this afternoon. Am exhausted like a big cat after all the excitement of the day.

Mum has just caught the fluffy monster. Can tell him that we saw his real Dad (a white lion).

Happy Sunday everyone!

*1993. By Henning Mankell. Book 3 in the Kurt Wallander series of detective novels, set in Sweden.

Animals In The Zoo*

Achievements Of The Day:

  1. Walk to Dolly’s house: 90 minutes.
  2. Walk Dolly:
  3. Buy yet another external phone battery.
  4. Meet Mum.
  5. Attend the Zoo:
  6. This is Bhanu.  He may well be the fluffy monster’s real father.  The lions have a brilliant new enclosure.
  7. Edward the baby sloth has gone to live in Zurich.  Hope he will be happy there.
  8. We see Malcolm the baby aye-aye but are not allowed to photograph the aye-ayes as they’re very secretive and sensitive and flash upsets them.
  9. Also not allowed to photograph the slender lorises, bushbabies or potto as they’re nocturnal.  But we see them.
  10. Have just arrived home.
  11. Still haven’t tidied that drawer…

Happy Tuesday everyone!

*1971.  Song by the Kinks.  Written by Ray Davies.  Appears on the album Percy.

In Search Of The Okapi*

The female okapi is right up by the fence, eating.  Am able to snap a couple of photos of her.  Can see her black tongue.  Look how beautiful she is:

Am at the Zoo with Mum and a friend and her mum and baby.  The panther stares at the okapi – no doubt thinking what a good lunch she’d make for him.

We see the giraffes:

And the lions in their new enclosure:

And spend some time watching the penguins:

Now am back at the parentals, writing this sitting up in bed.  The panther lies next to me, head resting on his front paws, eyes closed.

Other achievements of the day include:

1.  Push self hard at Spin – see attached outfit photo.

2.  Wash self and Spin clothes and hang them outside to dry.

3.  Spend most of the day walking around the Zoo.

4.  Cuddle the fluffy monster.

5.  Body scan meditation but can’t sleep.

Am exhausted after the day’s exertions.  Am going to read my book and wait for supper.

Happy Tuesday everyone!
*1904.  By Ernest Glanville.  Lost race adventure novel: “Cave-dwelling demon women encountered in Africa.”

The Lion’s Game*

“So, how’s it looking?” Mum says, peering at my burnt chest.  Have wandered into the kitchen after my bath.

“Well, um, you know they said that two weeks after the end of radiotherapy would be the peak of the skin reaction,” I say, pulling my towel around me.  “It’s not.  All the red skin still has to flake off and…”

“Yes,” Mum says, giving me that pitying look.  “The skin reaction started two weeks after the end of treatment, didn’t it so…”

“So it’s still getting worse,” I say.  “The skin has started peeling off underneath.”

“Well look,” Mum says, taking the veggie burgers out from under the grill.  “I’m still pleased with you for going out and doing a normal thing today.”

“It’s hard work though,” I say.  “Going into town on public transport and visiting an exhibition in the winter when I’m so ill.”

“I know it is, darling,” Mum says, chopping the burgers into little pieces, putting them in the soup.  

Have just been to the Delacroix exhibition at the National Gallery: amazingly well done me.   Unfortunately this painting wasn’t in it:

 A Young Tiger Playing With Its Mother (1830/1)

Look at those gorgeous pussycats.  Apparently they used to call Delacroix “the tiger” as he was so unpredictable and exotic.

There was a painting of a lion hunt which was my favourite one.  The lions were repelling the hunters.  Here:

The Lion Hunt (1854)

Anyway, the exhibition is worth a visit.  It explores Delacroix’s influence on other artists and shows their work alongside his.  There are paintings by Matisse, Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh, Cezanne and Degas, amongst others.  It wasn’t too busy on a Tuesday lunchtime.

Am exhausted now though.

The attached photo is the world’s second largest cat.  We saw the world’s largest cat last night on the television.  He’s a Maine Coon called Ludo who is 118.5cm long and lives in North Yorkshire.  His owner walks him in a harness.  Show you:

Happy Tuesday everyone!
*2000.  By Nelson DeMille.  The second John Corey detective novel.