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I’m returning to the Cincinnati Zoo on Monday to work as a keeper in the Bird House. I’ll be there for three weeks doing what I do best: hosing down enclosures, cutting up fruit, feeding the King Penguins, artfully arranging food in a bucket for the fruit bats, and washing mountains of dishes. It’s a lot of work and I am dreading the first week. Last year, after five days my muscles were so sore, I could barely walk. After the first week I was okay, but the pain I was in was shattering.

I’m looking forward to seeing my old friends:DSCN0127Buddy and Me

DSCN0004Steve and Kim

DSCN0104Patricia & Patricia

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Val, Keeper of very large creatures

DSCN0147The Keas

DSCN0038Max and Blue

There are many things I want to do that I didn’t get to do last year. You’d think three weeks is a lot of time to spend at a zoo and that it is ample enough to accomplish all you’d like to accomplish, but it’s not. I never got to ride on the Zoo Train:

DSCN0117And I want to work with a couple of the King Penguins to make some “Penguin Paintings” like these that are nice enough to go up for auction at the “Zoofari” fundraising event:

DSCN0121I have lots of great ideas and I’m very idealistic. However, I do know one place I will be spending many hours and it helps out the Keepers in a huge way:

DSCN0010Standing right there at this sink and washing food plates.

It’s the tradeoff you make for getting to do other things. Like this:

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I’m leaving Monday for Cincinnati and I’ll be reporting right here on my daily activities. I now have a video camera, so I’ll be incorporating video into “Parrot Nation” as well as photos of what it’s like to work at the Cincinnati Zoo. I’m looking forward to it and I hope you join me as I take on a job that will be having me smell like a mackerel the entire time I’m there.  Please stop in to see what I’m up to. Thanks for stopping by.


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