Samantha Ling (lingtm) wrote,
Samantha Ling

A Day at the Long Beach Aquarium

It really has been more than a month since I last updated hasn’t it?  I blame twitter mostly because it takes like 2 seconds to tell you what I’m doing at that very moment.  Microblogging is easy.  Real blogging takes time and effort.  Anyway, enough whining!  On to the blog complete with photos!

Several weeks ago I had to go to Laguna Beach, CA for work.  I brought Hubby Chris with me and we met up with Jenn Reese and Chris East at the Long Beach Aquarium!  Hubby Chris and Chris E. hadn’t met each other before and there was thought that something cataclismic might happen should they meet.  There have been several instances where they could have met, but circumstances wouldn’t allow it.  But everything was fine when they actually met.  There wasn’t a supernova or anything that happened.  We are all safe.

For the time being.

I hadn’t brought my DSLR with me because it’s seriously a pain to carry on plane trips.  It’s got to go into its own bag, along with the other bag that I’m carrying and then my purse.  Plus, it’s heavy.  Almost as heavy as a laptop.  So I left it home.  I thought I’d been to so many aquariums, what else could I really take photos of?  I had my little point-and-shoot with me.  I could capture new things, right?  Right?  Wrong!  

Never underestimate the enthusiasm of another photographer coming along with you.  Because we took a ton of photos with our little cameras and mine ran out of battery!  I’m bringing my DSLR with me next time.  I don’t care how much trouble and cumbersome that is.  I’m bringing it!  It has two extra batteries and can take 1000 photos.  Plus, it’s got different lenses and I just bought a new 50mm f1.8 lens one for an upcoming trip.  So I’m taking that big pain in the ass DSLR if it kills me!

So anyway.  We got to the Long Beach Aquarium and Hubby Chris got a map.  It looked like a teeny-eeny-weeny little aquarium and I thought we’d be done with it in a couple of hours.  How wrong I was!  We were there the whole day.  Almost 6 hours in total.  

Jenn had said that she wanted to touch sharks, so when we got to the touch tank, we dove right in.

I hadn’t intended on touching them, but you know, since Jenn was doing it….

Sharks have a sandpaper-like texture.  These sharks were so used to it, that few of them reacted.  It seemed as though if they didn’t want to be touched, they just wandered out of reach and hung out there, which is what the sting rays did.  But a few got close enough to touch.  They have this wet velvety texture and not slimy at all.

We also touched some tidepool animals, starfishes and sea anemones and the like.  Some of the anemones were sticky while others were smoth like silk.  I said this outloud and the docent said that the sticky one’s are stinging us.  They think we’re food so they’re trying to trap us.  Humans just aren’t susceptable to those stings, unlike the poor fish that they eat.  They stop stinging once they’d realized that our fingers were not food.  The water for those tide pools were bitterly cold.  Like sticking your hands into ice water!  But I suppose that’s just the temperature they live in because I had a notice in my hotel room telling me the water in the ocean was 55 that day.  55!  I’d forgotten that west coast beaches were just that cold.

After we finished touching the anemones, a few children came up after us.  The docent told them not to stick their fingers into the middle holes.  They don’t like it, and plus, it’s their buttholes.  I don’t know why anybody would want to put their finger into any unknown hole much less one of an animal.  But I suppose children don’t have any qualms about that quite yet.

At this particular aquarium, they had a lorikeet enclosure.  Jenn got Chris E. and myself the nectar that they ate and handed us the containers.  They had a bunch of birds in that enclosure and a lot of them were quite fat.  I mean, like obese fat.  I wasn’t sure that they could fly.

Photo Courtesy of Jenn.

Most of them just walked right onto you and start eating the nectar.  

And when they’re done with you, they throw you away like a cheap slut.  One minute they love you, the next, you’ve been forgotten.  But before they do, they’ll humiliate you first.  Because using you just wasn’t enough.

Jenn took this too.  It’s ok, you can laugh. I’m just glad it didn’t poop on me!

I always enjoy my time with Jenn.  After the aquarium closed, we hung out at a bookstore and then went to dinner.  It was a very good and fun day.  And I’m glad I had not only a photo partner, but a touch the animals partner!  

Next year, I believe we’re going to the Wild Animal Park.  I shall bring my DSLR.

Originally published at Samantha Ling. You can comment here or there.

Tags: aquarium, long beach

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