Hippo love and other highlights from Calgary

Man oh man, I’m a lazy blogger. We went to Calgary last weekend and I still haven’t blogged about it. Well, at least you got to enjoy the pig kissing kid!


We took the Laundry Fairy to Calgary on Friday to spend some time with my brother and his family.  We had dinner and a visit with them and then went to our Hotel.  Going to a hotel is BIG fun for the kids because, as I mentioned before, we are very boring people and don’t get out much.  We picked a hotel with a pool because that gives them so much joy, then we let them watch WWF for a while until they went to sleep.  

Two amazing things happened the next day. The first was that at the Zoo,  I realized I didn’t know anything about the Hippopotamus.  They had a huge glassed in tank in one building where a couple of Hippos were ‘doing life’ . I had no idea that they actually walked around under water and stayed there for several minutes at a time. For some reason, I found that fascinating. I could have sat there and watched them for ages.  This massive, 7000 pound creature was just walking around like nothing. I guess if you weigh 7000 pounds, the buoyancy of water must feel good.  When we were on the way home I asked Ron what our pickup truck weighs. About 6400 pounds (including the canopy) was his answer.   It put the whole hippo thing into perspective. Think about it!

truck.jpg    hippo.jpg

So, the other big highlight was we met Ron’s Great Aunt Sadie for the first time. Why is this a highlight? Well, Sadie is the last relative living from his paternal grandfather’s family and we thought to never find out much about that family. Year’s ago when Ron asked his Dad about his father’s family, his Dad’s response was, ‘why the hell do you want to know that?’  ‘Nuff said.


However, Sadie was a treat. At 87, she was lively, on the ball, and full of info about her own family and those of her deceased siblings.

Sadie shared a lot of family history with us and gave us quite a few contact details for people  on that side of the ‘tree’.  For me, growing up in a family where relatives and family ‘history’ were treated as something very important, it made me happy to see some of it come together for Ron.  His Mom’s side of the family is a bit better about this stuff but not much. He doesn’t come from a high functioning, happy family but then, you can’t choose your family can you? Just have to make the best of it.


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42 Responses to Hippo love and other highlights from Calgary

  1. Jenna Howard says:

    Isn’t the hippo tank cool? Especially with all the fishies swimming around. I swear that’s the second most popular place for the kiddies (the playground being number one in the chaos factor).

    Hm…I have the sudden urge to go to the zoo now.

  2. cj says:

    I have never seen a real live hippo. My daughter is into some hippo books and our favorite story is “hippo’s go bezerk” 🙂 About a giant hippo house party. Perhaps when we are in Canada this summer we’ll make it a trip to see the live hippo!!!

    Isn’t it neat connecting with family? 🙂 Glad that was able to happen for you.

  3. Mailyn says:

    Don’t feel bad. I went to Vegas like a week [or 2?1] ago and I have yet to scan the pics. LOL.

    Cool hippo tank! Never seen one before. But I did see white tigers in Vegas! I just have to scan the pics. 😛

  4. Margaret says:

    .cool hippos I never saw them on our long ago visit to the zoo,the pic are neat
    so glad you got to meet some family that is into family.

    talked to mom , Neal missed his birthday dinner hadn’t got home from work yet,so the family started at 7:30 without him. Hjope he made it for cake!

  5. Mike says:

    The animal kingdom IS facsinating. As a child I lived about a mile from the Brookfield Zoo [the worlds largest at the time]. We snuck under the fence almost every weekend. Hippos have killed way more people than Africa’s lions have. They are extremely aggressive, unpredictable and unafraid of humans, upsetting boats sometimes without provocation and chomping the occupants with its huge canine teeth and sharp incisors. Most human deaths occur when the victim gets between the hippo and deep water or between a mother and her calf. That doesn’t come to mind with a name like “River Horse”. Does it?

    Trips such as this one of yours are the stuff golden memories are made of – what a great time!!!! ;0)

  6. kyahgirl says:

    Jenna-you’re a lucky girl! I also really enjoyed the grizzly bears.

    cj-I hope you have a zoo closer than Canada! I’ve seen lots of hippos on things like National Geographic but it just doesn’t compare to real life.

    Mailyn-you shouldn’t have told me about your Vegas pics, now I will compelled to bug you!

    Margaret-nice to see you. That doesn’t surprise me about our brother.

    MIke-thanks for the facts about the hippos. I promise to never annoy one! 🙂

  7. weirsdo says:

    That is a neat way to show hippos. Usually one sees just a pair of nostrils.
    I find that finding out more about my relations has taught me a lot about myself. My favorite thing I learned (sorry if I shared this before here) was that people from my paternal grandfather’s town in England are known for being nonconformists and musical.

  8. karma says:

    looking at the 2 pictures, what is think is, ‘Put a hippo in your tank!’

  9. Miz BoheMia says:

    My grandma is 86 and still ticking and going strong and all that in spite of the fact that she almost died 3 times in December… she is back to living alone and driving herself to places and scheming and coming up with ways to make others miserable… which is a good sign when it comes to her! Unfortunately, she is not a reliable source for the truth!

    Glad Ron has her and glad you guys got to have this getaway!

  10. jan says:

    Hippos have always fascinated me. They seem to have no survival skills, except size. Yet somehow they seem vulnerable and in need of protection. Maybe that is the lesson we learn when we go to the zoos.

  11. kyahgirl says:

    wiersd-no, you didn’t tell me that before. I can see the genes are running true from your paternal grandfathers side then!

    karma-it would have to be a big, big tank!

    Miz B-glad to hear your grandma is still with you.

    jan-they are pretty dangerous yet, like for so many species, mankind has found a way to threaten their existence. sad.

  12. g says:

    That is amazing – hippos can almost seem delicate underwater. Sounds like a nice little journey, especially meeting with Aunt Sadie. So many tales that spin the web of our families. I do appreciate have that information.

  13. That does sound like a lot of fun.. The hippo is amazing. I had no idea the weight of those guys. I sure wouldn’t like to have one step on my toe!

  14. Logoâ„¢ says:

    Very cool trip!
    Thing One, for YEARS, would refer to a hippo as
    “a hippolotamus.”
    We still call them that on occasion, just sort of wormed its way into the family lexicon, you know?
    Sadie sounds like a real find.

  15. Meow says:

    Hippos are just amazing to watch.
    I just love how they are modernizing the enclosures at the zoos these days, to make them more user-friendly for us humans to see, yet also more animal friendly for them.
    Sadie sounds amazing.
    Have a wonderful week.
    Take care, Meow

  16. FirstNations says:

    one of many nicknames for our Opie dog is ‘the hippo-bottomous’. trudging through the tall weeds with only his big butt and his nose sticking up he does look like a bitty hippo looking for a boat to capsize.

  17. Doug says:

    Our family history on both sides stayed pretty cloudy. When I started delving once it seemed like prison records were the best source of information and I understood why geneology isn’t a big fetish in my particular clan.

    I feel like I understand the hippo.

  18. kyahgirl says:

    g-they were graceful and reminded me of Sea Lions.

    schnoodlepooh-no, you wouldn’t want to get that close. I heard they are pretty ornery too.

    Logo-you know you’ve doomed me to using ‘hippolotamus’ from now on don’t you?

    Meow-this is the first zoo I’ve been too since I was small. It was pretty good but I don’t think the wolves had enough room and the muskox were right near the highway!

    FN-I bet your Opie is a cute as a button 🙂

    Doug-prison records eh? well, you can’t choose your relatives can you. They are all alcoholics on my Mom’s side of the family so yeah, we all have our skeletons!

  19. ames says:

    Hi!!! How was your weekend beauitful?

  20. Doug says:

    Kyah, you misunderstand. I’m delighted to come from unsavory stock. If I could have chosen, I’d be Ghengis Khan’s black sheep.

  21. actonbell says:

    Oh, I remember the thrill of hotels, when I was a kid:) And the hippos do sound interesting–I didn’t know they could be underwater for so long, either. Zoos are such a treat.

    Congrats on meeting Great Aunt Sadie, too. She probably enjoyed talking about her family immensely, and you gave her the rare opportunity:)

  22. Kyahgirl says:

    ames- Hi 🙂 It was busy, cold and snowy!

    Doug-oh, of course I misunderstood. 🙂 How silly of me!
    Thanks for sorting me out.

    actonbell-yes, she did seem extremely happy to have us there and she was so thrilled to see what a quiet, considerate, and polite person Ron was. Based on his father and other relatives from that part of the family, I don’t think she had high expectations 🙂

  23. weirsdo says:

    D. S. Prate has answered your query.

  24. Miz BoheMia says:

    You will get to see her in an upcoming taped moment from the land o’ B! 😉

  25. Barngoddess says:

    great post!! I was wondering how you have been 🙂

  26. Kyahgirl says:

    weirsdo-thanks, I think. D.S. Prate is a nasty one.

    Miz B-looking forward to more tapes from the land of B. will pop right over.

    Barngodess-thanks for stopping by. I’ve be over at the reservation soon!

  27. surly girl says:

    hey laura!! *waves*

    you know the best thing about hippos? apart from the nose, and the big old backside and all?

    underwater they look like if you put them on land they’d just sort of stand there. but no! they can run at thirty-plus miles per hour. that, along with the teeth and a general bad mood, makes them the most dangerous animal on earth.

    i think i might have been a hippo in a previous life. or maybe the next one. or this one. whatever.

  28. Kyahgirl says:

    sg-you’re not saying you’re a big mean hippo are you? No way….you’re just a bit peckish is all 🙂 (so nice to see you again by the way-hope your life is settling down a bit!)

  29. weirsdo says:

    He’s very protective of his clients.

  30. IDV says:

    Man oh man, I’m a lazy blog commenter! Only a week late. Never mind…

    I love hippos – when they’ve got their mouths shut that is. I remember being fascinated with them from an early age when there was some underwater footage of hippos in an old, black & white Tarzan film.

  31. mailyn says:

    Dude, where are you? I demand a new post. lol.

  32. kyahgirl says:

    weirsdo-yes, I noticed! 🙂

    IDV-don’t you worry. There’s lots of time. Nice to see you.

    Mailyn- heh heh, I’m really pushing the envelope on the lazy blogger thing eh? Well, my excuse is I still have company and its hard to find time to do any posting….I promise I’ll try 🙂

  33. neva says:

    it sounds as though your trip to Calgary was a great one, indeed! i had a spunky great (great) aunt who lived up there (until she died when she was in her 90’s)… my funny Aunt Nettie. i only mention it because Sadie & Nettie sound a lot alike (something in the water, perhaps?)

    as for the hippo info? i did not know that. and i’m very impressed (you’re right, of course, the truck *definitely* puts its size in perspective!) some day you really should try to get down to San Diego Zoo’s Wild Animal Park, if you really want to see animals living in an environment as close to their natural habitats as can be found in… well… San Diego (really, it’s quite spectacular. at least it was back when we last visited!) xox

  34. Fred says:

    I still haven’t blogged about my July trip to Myrtle Beach with my high school buddies. You think you’re lazy?

  35. Al says:

    Very nice post, Kyah, but I have to disagree a little — you can pick your family — at least, the one that counts the most. Your shared encounters with strange creatures, like Hippos, will glue it together forever.

  36. mailyn says:

    Whenever company keeps you from your priorities like blogging and having fun I’d say they’ve overstayed their welcome and it’s time to send them packing. LMAO. 😛

  37. frangelita says:

    The hippo sounds ace. I’ve never seen one. Maybe one day I will. Dangerous creatures, I hear.

  38. Miz BoheMia says:

    Where you at sistah? Bohemians miss you FO SHO!

  39. weirsdo says:

    Kyah, the dolls are looking for work. All reasonable offers considered, as well as irrational ones.

  40. kyahgirl says:

    Neva-You Aunt nettie sounds great!

    Fred-now Ill be looking for your Myrtle beach story.

    Al-I guess you’re right, you can choose to some extent (at least your partner!)

    Mailyn-I agree 🙂

    Frangelita- Hi, nice to see you.

    MiZ B-I’m here now! just been too busy.

    Weirsdo-I will see if i can drum up a job for one of them!

  41. Mom says:

    finely got a chance to read you Blog interesting coments happy to hear you are feelng better love Mom.

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