Monday, May 24, 2010

Please, do feed the animals!

One can't really be sure what to expect when entering a park claiming to have elk, bison, bears, and other various arguably wild animals...where you are free to feed any of them with bread you can buy at the park. When my copilot suggested a trip to the Olympic Game Farm while we were in Seattle this weekend, I was slightly concerned. It seems like a terrible idea to feed a bear, considering it's entirely possible that human flesh is what they really have a hankering for. But I wanted to tour some of Puget Sound, and did I really need both arms? As long as I held on to the right one, I'd probably be OK.

My copilot, a buddy and I set off for the park on Sunday morning. It was gigantor. You pay your entry fee and they give you some bread and basically set you loose to drive around (with the caveat that you should keep moving around the buffalo in case they decide to, I don't know, tip your car over or chew on it or you or something).

There were peafowl just randomly wandering around every part of the park.

I really wanted to take some of these guys home, so that guests would feel like they were in some sort of surreal, Dali-esque dream whenever they came over. Alas, none of them fit in the trunk.

We went through a group of yaks that were very friendly:

They seemed to enjoy petting and a gentle scratch as much as the food.

"Can I keep him?"

The co-pilot made a friend too:

We sallied onward to the bears. My trepidation was in vain--they were safely behind an electric fence, but you could toss bread to them.

That's right--he's catching bread in his mouth.

They seemed to be as entertained as we were. This one would indicate when he was ready for another toss with a wave of his paw.

We moved on to another section--home to a large herd of European Fallow Deer. These guys and gals were aggressive:

They continued to follow us, poking their head through the window and vying for position. Then the car in front of us encountered the big guys:

Uh oh. There was a lot of girly screaming as the bison approached our car, but I reassured my copilot and buddy that I would protect them. I rolled up the window a tad so we wouldn't get the full monty:

Ewwww. It was all slimy, and it's tongue was practically a prehensile hand. It didn't help that we'd watched part of a Star Wars marathon on FX the night before, and an icky Jabba the Hut tongue was fresh in my mind. It slimed the window. Fortunately it's a rental car.

The last group we encountered were some elk, and by comparison they were polite and refined. It was the first time I'd seen an elk and they were impressively HUGE.

They politely popped their head in, retrieved their snack, then withdrew to chomp on it. Definitely a unique experience! Also, some of the largest piles of poo I've ever seen.

On our way home, we decided to check out a psuedo-famous ice cream place on Bainbridge Island--and Google Maps informed me that right next door was Churchmouse Yarns & Teas. Score. A yarn/tea shop is a 'retirement dream' for myself and another good friend, so I owed it to us to check it out. I'm kicking myself for not taking any photos, but this place was AWESOME. So much high quality and hard to find yarn and literature, and teas to boot.

The staff asked me several times if I was on the yarn tour. I was not, I didn't know that such a thing was going on. Apparently it was the 5th Annual 'Destination Yarn' for the Puget Sound area, where 25 LYS were participating. "Why the hell am I not on this tour??" I was thinking, but soon got my answer: my copilot and buddy navigated the store as awkwardly as if they were in Victoria's Secret with their respective moms. Going to twenty-five yarn shops would probably have made me liable for dude-torture (and would have been hell on my wallet), so it's probably for the best. But here's a sample of the goods:

This one actually has a motivation--I'm going to do a psuedo-Knit-A-Long (KAL) with WifeMomKnitter's Stitch n' Bitch group through Ravelry--so this is what I picked. It's virgin wool, so I could dye it any color, but I kind of like it that weird?

This is just because I've been told Socks That Rock yarn, well, rocks. It's quite tough to find, so I grabbed some while I had the chance. It's a favorite of the gal that taught me to knit my first sock, so there's gotta be something to that.

Shawl inspiration. I'm a sucker for knitting history.


  1. I love knitting history, too. I'm in on the KAL, too. I just have no idea what I'm going to do yet!

  2. You can buy peafowl over the internet. It's quite expensive though...just saying is all. ;-)

  3. Oh my goodness... I can't imagine the feeling of buffalo tongue, haha. And I love the undyed wool you scored. I'm a fan of natural colors and would be inclined to leave it be as well.

  4. Hey, my stomping grounds! Gotta watch out for those bison tongues, though-- wicked! Lovely yarn. You were wandering far & wide from Seattle!

  5. Loved the part about a lot of girly screaming but you would protect them. LOL!!!

  6. Awsome pictures...what a "wild" park! I have felt a cow's tongue, buffalo probably similar, eewww!