Sunday, April 16, 2006

Cool for Meerkats

No church for us this Easter Sunday. Oh, no. We headed, instead, to a 21st century temple of entertainment - a theme park. Flamingo Land is no Alton Towers, whatever that means, but, given that the £100 worth of tix were freebies and the sun was shining at last, it wasn't a bad place to head to build up an appetite big enough to rid the dining table of all that chocolate that's currently sitting on it. There were enough white knuckle rides to make me feel ill as soon as we headed through the entrance gates. Unless that was the cheeseburger I ate for breakfast. First impressions were great and then we headed into the public toilets, prior to getting strapped in to something fast moving, and were overcome with the stench of urine. How can it be so bad? The place only reopened last weekend. Amid the fat, unhappy looking meerkats, the fat, unhappy looking penguins and the fat, unhappy looking chimps were lots of fat, unhappy looking Geordies. Most of them talking in an indecipherable tongue and complaining about the price of beer in Professor Bubbles Bar (Flamingo Land's lack of an apostrophe, not mine). That wasn't the only exciting sight. We also watched baboons having sex. Such is nature. And Benson the sea lion (right), who's been learning how to balance a ball on his nose since 1985 and, even I'll admit, is rather good at it. Apparently it's all to do with the whiskers. Naturally, all the kids wanted to do was seek thrills and spills on mechanical rides but I'd've gladly spent 5 hours watching the chimps watching me. There's a train that runs around the park. We were going to go on it, although we failed to bargain that the crowds would be a bigger shower of shit than the people that use the London Underground. Is it so important to get a seat in a small gauge wild west-themed rail carriage that moves at 5mph on a journey that is, ultimately, merely a waste of time, that you push children out of the way? One of the highlights was catching a 20 second glimpse of Professor Bubbles up on stage, entertaining the drunken Geordies, who all looked at the poor bloke wearing a paper mache head as if they were going to cause him serious damage after the show. That will happen if you sing Mambo No 5.

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