wildlife watching, zoo stuff

Baby Panda. That is all.

Okay, so as a reward for (finally) having a functional (and neatly organized) closet again, I got myself up earlyish today and went to the San Diego Zoo during the morning BABY PANDA viewing. I’ll just leave this here…

Baby panda hugs

I would say that I could just quit the internet for today… but I really ought to write a blog post about what I did last week. And there are more photos from the zoo for you. I hung out in the Reptile Walk, mostly. Less people, and some awesome lighting. ^_^ But mostly there’s more of this:




Visiting the Safari Park and other odds and ends about San Diego

Okay, so I know I haven’t updated at ALL and for that I apologize. So here are a few things:

1. My email seems to be okay. You can go back to using my yahoo account if you like, but if it happens again I’ve got a shiny new email address lined up and waiting for transfer.

2. We went to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park today. Here are photos.http://lavavolavka.shutterfly.com/4050

2a. The Safari Park was awesome! We didn’t get to see everything even though we were there about six hours. One of the things we DID get to see was the cheetah run– they have a cheetah sprint on a track for 100m. The one we saw did it in 6.01 seconds. Amazing! But the best part was that we got the behind the scenes cheetah tour, too… And got to meet the cheetah after the race! We stood down by the track, got to talk to the trainers, and then got our photos taken with the cheetah. It was very, very cool. I’ll have to post those separately.

3. San Diego is dry. Have I mentioned that? If not, well… It is. It’s is the driest place I’ve ever been and it will take some getting used to the climate.

4. We got a place to live! It’s a great little condo in a trendy, nice area of town and is within walking distance of Balboa Park and the zoo. Yay! Photos next week when we move into it.

5. I really like how many options there are here in terms of things to do. I doubt I’ll ever be bored, especially living so near so many cafes, shops, museums, etc.

I think that’s about it for now. I have other photos of the last week, including the ones from the zoo, but I will have to post those later.

navy life, zoo stuff

September rains

Well, I’m sitting in a coffee shop to access wifi and generally realizing that during moves I drink way too much coffee and tea and whatever else I get at coffee shops. Probably not great, but wifi is awfully helpful.

We got places to stay lined up in California (including four nights in Anaheim!!) until the 9th, so that feels pretty good. I’m not worried about this move, other than the usual stuff that goes along with being unsettled. There seems to be a wide variety of housing available, too, which is nice.

This move has (so far, anyway) been a little TOO smooth, if that makes sense. We haven’t had on anything go really wrong or become difficult. I shouldn’t complain (and I’m not, believe me!), but I remember all the stress of coming out to Hawaii in the first place… Of course, the cats were with us then and now they are waiting in limbo for me to come get them in October, so maybe that has a lot to do with it. I don’t have to find pet friendly hotels, or worry about driving them around, or worry about crazy import paperwork and blood samples and all of that this go-round. It’s so… NICE. Ha.

I’m thinking I’ll do the request I received for un-pretty Hawaii photos before we leave. If I have time this week, I’ll take some. In the meantime, I have photos from my last zoo day in one of the sections where I volunteer. Big kittehs!


Aren’t they beautiful?


It’s nice having a big zoom and access to great views. ^_^

photography, wildlife watching

Kaena Point hikes over Memorial Day weekend

monk seal basking

We went hiking twice this weekend– in the same state park. It’s the Kaena Point part, and there are two entrances. You hike around the western point of the island where there aren’t any roads– just a wide trail. And at the very end is a beach where the monk seals bask and have their pups. ^_^

Here are photos from that.

Two weekends ago was Military Appreciation Day at the zoo, and I have photos from that, too.

this and that

Days downtown: week 20 of 2012 in photos

I spent a lot of time downtown this week, especially at the zoo, so most of this weeks’ photos are from that.

5/14/2012 Coke display

This was the Coke display at the grocery store on Monday. I thought it was cool. They do some really clever things with the boxes of soda. It never makes me want to buy any, though, so I’m not sure if it’s entirely successful in terms of marketing.

Continue reading “Days downtown: week 20 of 2012 in photos”

this and that

And then I went to the beach: week 16 of 2012 in photos

4/16/2012 chocolate rabbit

I couldn’t think of a clever theme for the 3rd week of April, except that most of my photos were from the zoo, and I ended the week at the beach. This is the tiny chocolate rabbit from my Easter basket that was (almost) too pretty to eat… until Monday the 16th, anyway.

Continue reading “And then I went to the beach: week 16 of 2012 in photos”

conservation, movie reviews

Thoughts on Chimpanzee (the movie, not the animal)

As this weekend was Earth Day, it was also the opening weekend for the new Disneynature movie, Chimpanzee. And as I have every year, I went with a group from the zoo to go see it.

It’s always interesting to go see an animal movie w/ zoo people because we see things with that perspective. So the comments afterward were along the lines of this:

“At least they didn’t personify the chimps quite as much as in the lion one last year.”
“Why does there have to be an ‘invading force’ and all that, why not just say the other group needs more food to support itself?”
“Why are all of the ‘bad guys’ in these Disney movies named things like Scar? Or Fang?” (My contribution? “I like the name Roscoe…”)
“I wonder how much they edited it in the studio for _______ scene…”

You get the idea.

The footage was beautiful, though. I especially liked the parts where they filmed rain in slow motion as it poured down on mushrooms and leaves, and a part where they showed phosphorescent fungi. This is what I really like about these type of movies– the high definition, gorgeous footage of the wildlife and of places I’ll probably never see in my lifetime.

So yeah. I liked it overall.

Last thing for tonight and then I’m going to bed (I’ve been up since 4:30, which is a whole other matter). A friend sent me this:


Joanna problems, Slight sarcasm, zoo stuff

Life Lessons from the Zoo

I realized today that I have learned several important Life Lessons from my time spent at various zoo and animal-related places. Here are some of them.

  • Easy humor is not the same as smart humor and usually not clever or original. Put some thought into it. (Just today I got the oh-so-clever line, “And what kind of wild animal are you?” Thanks, funny guy. Because I haven’t heard that in, oh, two days.)
  • People all think they know what’s best, and will tell you so at any opportunity, especially when they don’t understand the reasoning behind the thing they’re being asked to do.
  • “Having fun at work” means all sorts of different things. I think I’m the type of person who views “high productivity” as more fun that “sitting around” and that’s good to know.
  • “High productivity” doesn’t equate to overwhelming paperwork. Being outside and having a lot to do is better than being inside and having a lot to do.
  • If it doesn’t have a tail, it’s not a monkey, even if it has a monkey kind of shape. This is true for other things; calling something a name doesn’t make it the thing you are calling it.
  • Every day there is the same exact mess to deal with, and the work will never be done, but that doesn’t make the work less worthwhile.
  • Things are not always what they seem; a bucket might indicate it’s “feeding time” but it might also contain tools, paint, fill-dirt, or yes, even poop. Don’t assume, just ask.
  • Tourists always wear bad shoes, whether it’s hiking in high heels or the chunky sandals that are unnecessary for paved, flat sidewalks.
  • Act like you are supposed to be there and chances are no one will question you.
  • Make eye contact and smile and people will tell you their life stories– they want someone to listen, even if you’re trying really hard to get your chores done.
  • Weeds always grow back, unless you take them out at the root. Find the root and chances are you can fix the problem once and for all.
  • Admitting when you don’t know how to do something isn’t a weakness; it’s a chance to learn how to do something new.
  • Using the tools you’re given correctly makes all the difference in the world; no matter how many times you swing a pick-ax, if you don’t hold it the right way it won’t make a dent.
  • You have to wade through (and shovel out) a lot of crap in order to earn the reward in the end, but it’s worth it. It is absolutely worth it.


navy life, photography

Takin’ care of business: Week 9 of 2012 in photos

This week has been one in which I accomplished a lot and worked very hard on several projects. My photos are mostly of things related to them, with a handful of other randomness.

Monday I cleaned the bedroom and started getting things together to make a deployment shadowbox and scrapbook for J. He collected some patches, so I had them spread out on the bed… and Caspian decided they were his.

Continue reading “Takin’ care of business: Week 9 of 2012 in photos”

this and that

Strange Self-Portraits: Week 6 of 2012 in photos

This week I seemed to take a few random self-portraits that kind of capture what I was doing better than anything else. So here we go!

2/6/2012 highlights day

2/6 On Monday I got my hair done, and this was one of my retouching-highlights appointments so I had lots of foil on my head. I kept wondering if the aliens could still hear me through all of that aluminum…

Continue reading “Strange Self-Portraits: Week 6 of 2012 in photos”