Sigyn and I are taking advantage of the slightly cooler weather to take a little just-for-us trip. No boring mortals allowed! I asked Sigyn where she wanted to go. After cookie animals and pasta animals, she wants to see REAL animals, so we have made the drive to an African wildlife park. (The wildlife is African, not the park. I’ve nothing against the continent, and getting FAR away from the human female would be great, but this place is much closer, and going does not require pesky things like passports and inoculations.) We have hopes of seeing at least some of the “Big Five.” If I remember correctly, that is: lions, leopards, elephants, rhinoceroses, and um, er…bi-colored python rock snakes.
I feel cheated! We have been walking for quite some time and haven’t seen anything yet. There is a lot of tall grass. I suppose there could be anything good at hiding out there. Wait! Shhh–! Do you hear that? There’s something just over there. What do you think it—?
Well, look at that! I did not know this park has apes! Sigyn, did you know this park has apes? He seems friendly. But I think he is mugging for treats. Sorry, fellow, we’re not carrying any Simian Snacks.* You will have to settle for a selfie with the cutest little Sigyn on the planet.
Supposedly, this is the part of the park where the elephants spend most of their time. I don’t see any, but animals love Sigyn so much that, if we stand here for a little, I am willing to bet some show up to snuggle her.
Fortunately, conjuring hay is a trifling spell, so Sigyn can offer him a treat.
Careful, Sigyn! It is a long way down off an elephant.
Sigyn wants to bring the elephant with us. Sigyn, my beloved, a wildlife park is not like the animal shelter. I do not think we will be allowed to adopt your new friend and take him with us. One cannot simply take home any animal– Yes, yes, I know we have a hyena and an exotic bird at home, but those were special cases and… Oh, sweetie, don’t cry. We will come back and visit him again, all right? I promise.
All the hay and the kissy noises have attracted some attention from another quarter.
The hippo is also a big fan of hay. Don’t get too close, Sigyn! I hear that hippopotami have very large teeth.
* Don’t laugh. They make it. And in multiple flavors. I bought Thor some of the berry-flavored enrichment gel some time back and told him it was like Strawberry Nesquik. He’s been drinking it in his breakfast milk for a month now…