Today the Scientist and I took the bus to the Lincoln Park Zoo and Conservatory. A gorgeous sunny day, with a sky as vast and blue as Alberta’s, especially as we drove north along the lakeshore.
It’s been ages since either of us visited an “honest to goodness” zoo. Chicago’s zoo is free and today was filled with families, and children from around the city attending summer day programs. Blue, red, orange, the different coloured t-shirts helped the counselors keep their eye on the right kids.
All of us were captivated by the size and majesty of the “big cats” – the lazy lions and sleeping tigers, and the pacing leopard.
The musing gorillas, watching us watch them…deeply curious.
The child-like faces of the monkeys and meerkats, stripes and patchwork coats on the zebras and giraffes, horned rhinos and humped camels, a bathing hippo, grooming flamingoes, birds resplendent with iridescent plumage or camouflaged in the trees.
A polar bear diving for its snack of romaine lettuce had us all spellbound by its transformation from lumbering on land to grace in the water.
Each was beautifully exhibited within a zoo known for its commitment to species research and preservation, and all within a magnificently landscaped park.
The Conservatory, a formal greenhouse featuring displays of tropical palms, ferns and orchids was the calm, meditative counterpoint. Every shape of foliage and variation of green imaginable.
The orchids, a display of vibrant colour and design, their subtle fragrances an echo of the orange jasmine perfume that greeted us upon entering this old world glass “jewel box.”
“How to capture these scents as exquisite and diverse as the blossoms we photograph with our phones and cameras?” wondered aloud a woman from Chicago, enjoying a day off, in love, too, with this grand abundance of Life.
How do you capture, even for a moment, your love of Life in all its forms?