My mum’s got terminal cancer. I’ve not written about it as although there’s lots I can write, I’m not sure I want to share someone’s story that isn’t actually mine, although it impacts us and will impact us even more. I’ve got lots of blog posts in mind, but not sure I’m ready to write them yet.
But we had a great time out on Sunday, taking her out as a family with my brother to see penguins.
Because of her illness my mum’s had to cancel a holiday she had booked going to Chile, Patagonia and the Falklands. One of the highlights would have been seeing penguins, an animal she loves (let’s face it, they’re great birds). So she decided she wanted to go to the zoo to see penguins any way she could. Dudley Zoo seemed a bit far to go, but Cotswold Wildlife Park was perfect.
The day was gorgeous, chilly but bright blue skies, and wrapping up warm, it was a great time to visit. Even though it was the end of half term, the park wasn’t too busy which meant we could take our time, grab some lunch there without hanging around for a table and not worry about bashing people with the wheelchair.
Although N and I have quite often taken trips out in the past with my mum, it’s unusual for us to be out as a family, so it was nice for us all to enjoy a day out together. N loved being out with his uncle (it’s not often we go out with a male figure as his dad’s usually working), and he didn’t seem phased to see his Grandma in a wheelchair. I had been hoping that we’d be able to leave the buggy in the car, but of course he wanted that out.
The accessibility at Cotswold wildlife park is great. Good disabled parking spaces, the walled garden (where we were heading) is all pavement, and most of the main area is tarmac’d or wheelchair accessible (although a little bumpy from fallen seeds and leaves sometimes). We didn’t venture far as we’d obviously come to see specific animals.
The penguins were stars. Lots of follow my leader, showing off their swimming, and wandering backwards and forwards. There were a few having a shout at each other, some ‘kissing’ and we even noticed a couple having a bit of loving in the background! We got some great pictures for my mum to show to her ‘holiday’ friends. N quite liked the penguins, although he wasn’t keen when they came waddling round the other side of the wall where he was standing.
My mum also loves meerkats so we watched them for a bit too. Last time N and I visited, the babies were tiny, and they’re nearer adult size already. Still enjoying life and playing around, although it must have been pretty cool for them, as there were a pile of them obviously keeping warm.
We also tried out the Madagascar walk. For that walk, the lemurs often come up to you, pull on clothes, and are interested in the visitors…but not on this occasion. On entering we saw about 5 of them huddled on the roof above the secure entrance (think 2 doors/gates like prisons would have to ensure one door’s shut before the next is opened), then walking round, saw another few curled in a ball. And that was it. Obviously too cold, or too early on a Sunday for them!
Spot of lunch in the restaurant, followed by a watch of the penguins again and we were ready to head home.
It was a lovely day out and we were pleased my mum was well enough to be taken out and see what she’d wanted to, even if they weren’t in the wild.
I’m linking this up to Country Kids, we’re not getting out that often what with work, visiting and the weather (or N’s out on the farm with his dad), so we’re not having much to write about outdoors-wise at the moment.