Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Whales are Smart and Other Things We Learned From Our Visit to Sea World

The nice people at Sea World in San Diego recently treated our family to a day at their park. We hadn't been there for at least four years, so it felt like a whole new experience for us. Besides having an awesome time, I think we learned a few things.

1) Whales are really, really smart. How do they get them to jump on command, and so perfectly synchronized? I can't even get my cat to bury his own poop.

(This was shot during our Dine With Shamu lunch, which I highly recommend for getting a great up-close look at the whales and their trainers. And for having a nice, civilized lunch buffet. As you know, I'm a big fan of the lunch buffet, with or without a five-ton mammal splashing around in front of me.)

2) Penguins are cute. (Okay, so we knew that already.) As part of our special behind-the-scenes tour, we were allowed into a private penguin enclave. This little guy just wandered around between us. I really wanted to put him into my bag and take him home but I hear they frown on things like that.

3) There are fish that look like people you know. Relatives, even. I'm not saying which one, but when I saw this swimming towards me I half expected it to be carrying a big casserole and telling me how much I'd grown.

4) There are rides at Sea World.
Really good ones! We took the awesome Bayside Skyride that gave us an incredible view of the surrounding bay. My husband and I reminisced like old people do, about how they used to have the same thing at Disneyland. Then we told our kids how we used to walk five miles home from school. In the rain. Barefoot. While being attacked by killer bees. But our kids still loved this ride.

Then there's this Atlantis thing, that I wouldn't touch with a ten-foot-pole but my husband and kids loved. I just sat on a bench and waited for them. And had some coffee. And checked my email on my iPhone. They don't call me wild and crazy for nothin'.

5) There is a great circus there. Really, why haven't I heard more about this? It was an incredible, Cirque-du-Soleil-like circus that was funny, action-packed and entertaining for kids and adults. Make it a point to see Cirque de la Mer - you won't be disappointed. Plus, when was the last time you saw an outdoor circus? On the water?

6) Whatever you do, avoid the cappuccino cart.
This was our only real downer of the day. We were looking for our caffeine fix, so we paid almost $18 for four coffee drinks. After a really, really, long wait I finally got my double-cappuccino, but I swore there wasn't a drop of espresso in it, and turns out I was right because we found out the espresso machine was broken. Were they even going to tell us? The woman working the machine didn't even bother to explain, just took my drink back and tossed it in the trash can. We saw her and her co-worker trying to call someone to fix the machine, but they didn't offer up a refund, an apology or an explanation to us or anyone else patiently waiting for their drinks. After waiting for a good ten minutes we finally just asked for a hot chocolate for our younger daughter, an espresso-less mocha for our older daughter and two drip coffees for my husband and I. They never apologized, never offered to refund the difference for our drinks and by that point we just wanted to get out of there. Eighteen bucks for two small coffees, a hot chocolate and a faux-mocha.

We didn't let our coffee cart debacle ruin our day, though. We had a great day, and enjoyed that our kids aren't all that jaded yet and still get excited at the sight of dolphins swimming and being able to touch a starfish. We ended the day with the fireworks display, and were having such a great time we stayed until closing. Another thing we learned: Kids will never complain of being tired until you start the walk through the parking lot to your car.

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jamie said...

I really wish I hadn't read this because I am going to SeaWorld next week to review it and now I have a pre-emptive inferiority complex.

BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) said...

DUDE my girls will want you to be their mom if they find out about this. Sea World is on our "must visit" list.


Sharlene said...

Great. Now I have no real excuse as to why I can't go to Sea World. I remember getting kinda bored there when I last went in my college years but it seems like they have lots of new stuff.

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