Alexander Rikowski is currently on Reading Week from King's College, London, and he suddenly became very keen on the idea of going to London Zoo this week. The five of us (Glenn, Alexander, Victor, Gregory and myself) used to go to the zoo a lot when the children were growing up. It was (and indeed, still is) a real favourite of ours. We took out a family membership for a certain period, which included free entry to both London and Whipsnade Zoo, a copy of the zoo magazine and other various discounts etc.
But Alex was always particularly keen. In fact, he went to the zoo most weekends in his year 11 at school, as we had this family membership so entry was free - that was when he should have been studying for his GCSEs of course! He even went in the Christmas and New Year period in that year, when it was very cold and hardly anyone was there. He absolutely loved it all. So, I was not all that surprised when he suddenly said he wanted to go this week.
We went on Monday of this week (9th November). It was a bit wintry; not many people were there, and not everything was open, but still we had a lovely day, and took quite a few photos of the animals - see below. We saw two Asiatic Lion cubs for example - there were just so cute! We also went in the relatively new bird house - it replaced the old Victorian one. It was nice to actually be able to walk amongst some of the birds; they also have a monkey area like that, which we also went into. These days, of course, the zoo is very ecology-conscious. The zoo is also celebrating the year of Darwin's 200th birthday.The walk through Regents Park to get there was also lovely.
We also all thought it was really nice when Ken Livingstone got married at the zoo quite recently, to his long-standing partner. In addition, I went to a guided tour of the library of the Zoological Society a while ago, that was organised by ALISS (the Association of Librarians and Information Professionals in the Social Sciences). That proved to be very interesting; they have a great collection of material there. Anyone can join the library - only need to show proof of address. One member of staff there is assigned to regularly take photographs of the animals in the zoo, and is building up a very impressive image library. People can order copies of these pictures online. Fascinating and wonderful!
Anyway, here are the photos: