Saturday late afternoon.I am driving on the motorway following google map instructions.The car is loaded with blond heads adorned by jumping pony tails and colourful woollen hats.Only exception is me and CG with our boring brunette bobs.Sparkling boring brunette bobs thanks to the sequins adorning our basques. Our destination is the Dublin Zoo where there is an exhibition of tridimensional chinese lights.A decided not to have a party for her birthday this year. She just wanted to invite her 2 closest friends to see the “Wild Lights”.We booked the tickets well in advance and eventually the day arrived.The exhibition is from 5pm to 9pm.My idea is to get there around 5.15/5.30,enjoy the exhibition and have dinner at the food market where you can,allegedly,have a taste of chinese food.
Excitement is running high in the car.After 15 minutes driving my ears are already sore.I wish we had one of those 7 seater where you can cram the kids far in the back and leave a full row of seats between you and them.Their squeaky voices are echoing loudly but, at the same time,is also fun to listen at them gossiping about teachers and school mates.My head is currently bombarded by a multitude of concerns due to a very unpleasant situation in my family that,I am trying to legally sort out for months.Listening at this bunch of pre teens is just what I need to not to think about it.
We are nearly at destination. Google map is to me no guaranty to not get lost.I find myself doing the same roundabout three times but at the end we make it.We are parked and ready to go in.The queue is longer than expected but very very quick.
What it is in front of us is pure magic.Red lanterns hanging everywhere and escorting the visitors through all the exhibition area.Giant lotus flowers opening and closing on the water.Chinese dragons with the most vibrant colours.Giant flowers of every sort tracing the path all the way.We walk through a beautiful and luminous jungle surrounded by every kind of animals:from penguins to monkeys;from tigers to giraffe;from rhinos to elephants.The king lion with his spouse,the queen lioness.Peacocks unfolding their tails like a fan and challenging each other in a duel of colours and plumage to conquer their loved one.Jumping frogs.Pink flamingos with their long beaks nearly touching our faces while herons fly over our heads moving harmoniously their huge wings.It is quite crowded and of course very dark in order to enjoy this magic reign made of lights.I am constantly counting heads and making sure my gang of girls stay close together and to me.It is not easy.Too many things to see and photograph and too many people crossing our paths but we made it to the end with no losses.
It took us nearly one hour and a half to see the whole thing. I am the only one to be freezing.I am wearing my black tulle skirt(I have a light pink one for summer too).It is comfortable and most of all it makes me feel very Kerry Bradshaw.I just wonder if she would wear it to go to the zoo at night time.I think she would,and with warm tights underneath as I did.Definitely I am not freezing for the wrong choice of outfit.Everybody is enthusiastic,me included.We all agree that it was far better than expected.
Time to eat now.I can see neither A nor her friends are much of the idea to try the food market.To them is indeed more appealing McDonalds or Burger King.It is their chance to be treated with the unpopular,to parents,junk food. We go and see how it is anyway.The only one quite excited about it is CG .She is as much obsessed with unicorns then with China.The poor thing is waiting to eat chicken noodles for weeks,basically since we booked the tickets.She will have to wait a bit longer!The food market is a disappointment.It is not even a food market.It is the normal zoo restaurant with a chinese take away as a temporary add on.We all agree to head to good old junky Burger King.
The drive back home is much faster and with no mistakes.I memorised where to turn to get straight into the motorway. I don’t particularly like to drive in the dark. Despite the anti glare lenses on my glasses,the other cars lights still annoy me and I can’t see very well.The multiple traffic lights bother me as much. The ones where you have more than one light to go head or to turn.They really confuse me.That said I will also say that, of course, this doesn’t stop me to go out and about in the evening time.I just have to remember to wear my contact lenses when driving in the dark.The friends have been dropped home.Me and the girls are now home too.Home sweet home.Warm and cosy.We literally jumped in our pjs:nothing better.
I pretty much enjoyed this little adventure and the company of these 4 clever and funny young ladies.I felt really rewarded to receive their hugs and thank you but it is time to chill in the adults’ world now.I am done with kids time.I think that is the thing with bed time.It is not to give the kids a good rest in order to cope with the next day but it is more to give the parents a break.No matter how old the kids are!It is a threshold to avoid to compromise your mental health. I might be an ungrateful parent but by 7 in the evening(some days much earlier)I have enough of my kids.I need them out of my sight and ears.I don’t mean to be mean(what an unfortunate choice of words by the way)but,after being around little creatures under 12 most of the day,I need peace, quiet and adult time and company.
While the girls are already in their beds,exhausted but content,myself and the travelling husband are watching Pulp Fiction in the sitting room.We are sipping herbal tea and hot whiskey enlightened by that only wild light that are the crackling flames in the fireplace.