Thursday, June 16, 2016

Today we do nothing, because yesterday....

We drove to Tampa.  Tampa's only 1 1/2 hours away on the gulf coast.  Next week we'll head to the space coast an hour east. Skinny states can be awesome like that.

So yesterday we went to the Big Cat Reserve and saw big cats.  The kids were a little bummed that it wasn't a place to pet giant balls of fur, and there's one particular reason why not only do visitors not touch the cats, but neither do the staff. They feel that if anyone at any point touches, holds, leashes, or in any way treats a big cat like it's a pet then that encourages the perception that big cats belong in people's back yards and basements as pets for families or tools for status. The cycle then continues - buying wild kittens for show, followed by caging full-grown big cats because they are wild creatures who can't be trusted not to rip your face off if they want to play, are hungry, or are bored.

The rescue recognizes full well that the cats are still caged.  Unfortunately, these cats lived in "domesticity" and were often declawed, came to the rescue with a variety of illnesses, or are geriatric, that they could never be released to the wild. Instead, they each have a maze of linked cages that allow the cats to have areas of activity, rest, and most importantly, hiding. They all had trees to climb, water holes, and some cool-climate cats had caves with a/c.  With the heat (oh the oppressive heat!) the cats we did see were all trying to just get through the day.

With all that, we still came out saying how we'd pet a Caracal or a Serval or a Bobcat, oh yes we would.

Steak & Shake for linner.  For $4-$5 meals, not sure what I was expecting, but the milkshakes were good.

Then we split up.  Thirty minutes away (or "forever" in rush hour traffic) we dropped off the girls along the side of the road near the MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheater at the Florida State Fairgrounds for the Weezer/Panic at the Disco concert at 7 p.m. The road to even get into the fairgrounds was all backed up, and the line into parking was ridiculous, and really, the rest of us had a baseball game in St. Petersburg (35 minutes away) to get to that had a 7:10 p.m. start time. Lots of other people were bailing on their drivers along the road to walk into the fairgrounds so it's not like we abandoned them alone, right? And I may or may not have driven over the center island to turn around and get back on the highway. Because that line to get into the fairgrounds was going nowhere fast.

We're good parents, I promise.
So the boys and I went to a Seattle Marines vs Tampa Bay Rays MLB game.

Make it stop.

This is normal? At least no beer was flung.
Or batteries.  Or squids.

Human zambonis.

I enjoy watching my boy play baseball. Minor league games can be fun with the tshirt cannons and free burritos and such. MLB... it's baseball. And if there's no winner in 9 innings it Keeps Going. By the middle of the 12th we'd bailed because the concert was done and we still had to do the drive to get the girls which allowed plenty of time to listen to the rest of the game on the radio. By that time I was a little invested and wanted to know who won and how, because it was 2-2 for 8 long innings. Nicholas and Ian were cheering (really cheering!!) for the Rays. Jonathon and I decided to go for the Mariners, though as we finished the 9th we agreed to just encourage everyone so that the game might end.

The girls waited in the Five Guys across the street from the fairgrounds with a bazillion other young people, we found them without trouble, and were home by 1 a.m.

So today, we might do something as strenuous as, I don't know, maybe bowling. 

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