I did not have high expectations going to visit the Chiang Mai Zoo. On the whole, I am not a zoo person, for the same reason that I am not a circus person. I always end up feeling badly for the animals, no matter how spacious their enclosures are and how happy they seem. Wild animals belong in the wild.
That being said, the Chiang Mai Zoo had just welcomed a new baby panda when I was in town, and it was hard not to be sucked in by the promise of incredible adorable-ness.
Too hard, in fact, so I went to the zoo.
As it turned out, Mama Panda was not keen on sharing her baby with throngs of cooing tourists and endless camera flashes. We were treated to an extensive viewing of her backside, as she cuddled Baby Panda to her tummy against the wall.
- The only shot of the panda baby available: the promo poster.
Just as I was kicking myself for having been suckered into going to the zoo, I happened upon this poster:
- Yup, that is a parrot ON A BIKE.
I immediately flagged down a zoo staff member to find out more information. He directed me to a small amphitheater where I spent 25 minutes listening as a cheerful zookeeper prattled on in Thai, while parrots rode bikes, raced mini cars, and played basketball on a mini-court.
I had no idea what was going on, but whatever it was, it was delightful, and it more than made up for my panda baby disappointment.