Sunday before last we took three of our kids, our grandson, and my mother-in-law to Global Wildlife in Folsom, Louisiana, about 20 minutes away. Here's their website in case you'd like to see it: globalwildlife.com/
Wherever you go in southeast Louisiana, if you visit long enough with someone, even complete strangers, you will eventually discuss three things: the weather, the Saints, and Katrina. No doubt about it. As we neared the highest elevation on site, which is nothing more than a gentle rise, really, the tour guide told us how hard it was for the staff to evacuate and leave the animals there as Katrina approached. Some of the staff lives nearby and were able to check on the place as soon as the worst of the storm passed. What they found just blew me away. All of the animals, even the mean zebras, were laying on that area of slight elevation, shoulder to shoulder in a long, long line. That's how they hunkered down to wait out the storm together. When they were able to return to the site, they discovered that not one animal was killed during Katrina's wrath. Not only were all the animals safe, but three babies had been born during the hurricane.
What wonderful lessons we are able to learn from wildlife. When the storms of life approach, we are often inclined to run, screaming, crying, complaining, or to isolate, sulking, pouting, fretting alone. Instead, if we join forces with our neighbors and friends, even the ones who can be quite mean, folks we'd ordinarily avoid, and brave the storms, shoulder to shoulder, pooling our strength, our warmth, our courage, then we are more likely to still be standing once the storm has passed.
This is our son, Billy, feeding the cow. She's a pro at how to get that cup of feed!
I'm thinking tasty, low-fat bison burgers!
The camels are nearly bald in summer but still had their cool winter coats when we were there.
Our tour guide had a special spot in her heart for this guy. It looks like the feeling is mutual, too!
There were several species of cattle there.
These little donkeys are the ones that Eeyore and the Shrek Donkey are fashioned after. Bill had a hard time getitng a photo because that mama was protective of her baby. Isn't his baby coat pretty?!
Trying to pet or feed the zebras would end the tour instantly. We were told if the zebras like you, they will bite you. If they don't like you, they will bite you harder! lol They can easily take a person's fingers off with one CHOMP. Since it was actually the anniversary of cutting my little toe off in a treadmill mishap, I DEFINITELY did not want to celebrate the event but losing several fingers. So we left those beautiful zebras alone!!
Because the ground was so soft from our recent maniacal rains the train was unable to go to where the giraffes and lamas were hanging out and the only photo we got of the kangaroos didn't come out so well. Then we have my favorite characters, the two-legged critters! I was only able to hold onto Heath for a moment before he began exploring our train car neighbors and the buckets of feed.
Heath had multiple uses for the feed bucket and our new little pal, Issy, was intrigued! (Already he's a little flirt! lol)
Even Mama was having a hard time holding onto Heath. There was just so much to see and do!
Our youngest, Melanie, 12, was pretty bored with it all. I really think that 12 year old girls are among the most curious of all the critters there!
Dad finally gave up the camera long enough to let one of our train-mates take a shot of our whole crew:
I hope you enjoyed sharing a visit to Global Wildlife with us!