I guess it's just in my blood to be a bit daring at times, but today was just amazing on the part of the Zoo official that just about got himself arrested for sexual harassment and/or physically touching me when he asked me to "follow him, this way" to his cart. LET ME BACK UP - I go to the Oklahoma City Zoo about a dozen times a month between the months of March and November, this being the end of February, and a near perfect Zoo day, I decided to start my Zoo trekking a bit early - after all, it's been more than 3 weeks since I've walked it's (my) 2.5 mile personal fitness training track. When I go to the zoo with my kids I walk it twice, Laura observes the animals and Caity breaks as many physical and written laws as possible without killing herself, or bringing any harm to any creature...at least she tries.
I had something with me, something I NOW KNOW is considered contraband, and you just can't bring one into the public zoo. I had a little six-week old puppy, and I was carrying her in the bend of my arm. I was wearing a large sweatshirt, and around my shoulder I had one of those baby-bags that women often carry their brats in to keep them close and keep them quite. My baby wasn't crying, she wasn't screaming, she wasn't making noise at all, but a certain power tripper (I won't say his name as I don't wish him to be harmed by anyone) came up to me at the Oklahoma Trails and demanded (flashlight or stick in hand) that I leave immediately, I was a security threat, and the animal in my possession was unlawfully present. WHATEVER...I'm sorry, I could have been so mean and called him an idiot, but there were children present - Oh, let me re-state that: there were children climbing on the fence of the buffalo, and children throwing rocks at our State animal, with their FATHER's help...THAT SIR is a threat, and THAT sir, is a reason to bring out your stick! (OK, I'm OK)
I nodded to the man. I explained that I would be leaving immediately, that I would need to call my daughters and have them meet me at the gate. He began to approach me in a very unnecessary manner, with his hands raised and waving the stick...I couldn't see if it was a flashlight, he had it held funny. I told him to back off, I was leaving...and I pulled out my cell. Normally I don't speak poorly or bitterly at or about people, I really don't. I am not a petty person. I told him I was leaving, I even told him I was leaving immediately but he came within inches of grabbing my arm. The man with him, an assistant I think, grabbed his arm and said "(his name) come on, she's leaving, and it's not that big of a deal." To which the MORON claimed that I may be trying to throw the puppy to the cougar, or the bears. He didn't know if I was one of those crazies...well, we all know HE IS ONE of those crazies, now don't we? I called my agent and pretended he was my attorney. He went along with me, and the man backed off. The other guy apologized, and said "She's gonna call that in, we need to be sure you get out of here without making a bigger problem." Thank you 2nd man, I never got your name.
Oh, and I guess there's a Pet Hotel at the Zoo, didn't know, but the first guy, the moron, he said, and I quote "I'm taking you straight to the hotel, NOW, get in my cart." He failed to say PET Hotel, and I guess my face was rather shocked, because a random patron and her elderly father then approached to say "Sir, you are really out of control, please, back off and let this woman leave, she's trying to leave." My agent was concerned of course, but I assured him it was OK, the guy was finally leaving and I was able to get by him and his assistant to give the puppy and my keys to Laura so I could wait on Caity to get around the kids who were throwing rocks at the BISON...our state animal...did I say that already? I thanked the random woman, and I asked her to call and complain if she had time. She said she would. I did.
I apologized for bringing in the puppy. I clearly understand that some of the animals have keen smelling powers and may have picked up on the puppies scent, it may have stressed them - I won't do it again...but I will be damned if I will be wrangled like that by a power-tripping old geezer whose thrill of the week was to attempt to hoist someone out of the zoo. If I hadn't had dozens of witnesses to back me up, I would have found myself explaining his unfortunate demise had he come any closer. I have been watching that Israeli assassin trainer woman on cable...back off Mr. Power Tripper, I have elbows and knees!
Next time someone tells you to follow them, be sure to take a friend. Think with your insurance - at least get his name and call his supervisor to attend the escort. That was my next move, but thanks to the zoo patrons and his own co-worker I was able to leave the zoo with my 1 pound threatening pooch and live to blog about it.