19 Mar Slice of Life: A Suprising Disappointment #SOL19 #TWTBlog
Oh, I want to show you the polar bears. It is the best exhibit.
I lead my friend into the Central Park Zoo. I spent so many hours at this exhibit when I lived in the city. My husband (then boyfriend) and I didn’t have a lot of money. New York City was really expensive, so we spent a lot of time in Central Park. The polar bear exhibit was a favorite spot. We would read, play cards, or simply soak in a beautiful day. I could watch them swim around for hours.
After a few laps around the park I am disoriented. I was sure of where the polar bear exhibit was, but it wasn’t there. I thought my feet would remember the path. I see a sign up ahead.
I don’t know why I can’t find it. Let’s look on the map.
We scour the map. No polar bears on the map. That can’t be right. What happened to the polar bears? This is one of those moments when I am so grateful I have a smartphone.
Hey Siri, “Polar bears and Central Park.”
Zoo collection includes: Gus born in late 1985 at a facility in Buffalo, New York, was at the Central Park Zoo since it opened in August of 1988. He was euthanized (2013) at age 27 due to an inoperable thyroid tumor. Ida, the female bear, was euthanized (2011) at age 25 due to liver cancer. They are both greatly missed.
My heart sank. I don’t know why, but it hit me harder than I expected. Maybe it represents the passage of time. Maybe it reminds me of my own mortality. Maybe I was looking forward to being transported back to a time when. My friend’s voice orients me.
Do you want to see the grizzly bears? There are now grizzly bears in the exhibit.
No. No, I don’t.
We continue on our way and I leave a tiny piece of my heart with Gus and Ida.
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