The most inappropriate field trip ever…

Tuesday 29th November 2005
Hello everyone,
I am now just over a week from my flight to Australia, and I’m very, very excited about meeting my nephews (for those of you who didn’t know, my second nephew, Jack was born on Thursday November 17th, weighing in at a whopping 9lbs or so!!).
So I am very very excited and I have already drowned myself in cuddly toys and cute books and clothes for small people for xmas!!!
Anyway, moving on, we had the most inappropriate field trip ever on Saturday, which was nice. We took thirty kids aged 6 to 11 to Seoul to look at dead bodies. Actual, real, human, dead people with their skin peeled off.
It’s supposed to be a really famous exhibit by some German scientist dude, and it was fairly educational and everything, but seriously, six-year olds, and dead bodies? I just don’t see that as appropriate!
I found it really disturbing, and parts of the exhibit made me feel really queasy and sick. Thankfully the kids were too busy laughing at the genitals to actually connect the people with death I think. They didn’t really look real, cos of all the chemicals and stuff, but the last exhibit was all the foetuses (foeti?) and babies, and it made me feel really sick and faint. I mean, dead bodies is one thing, but these are somebody’s abortion, someone’s miscarriage or stillborn, it was horrific and disgusting and I couldn’t look at them. They had fully grown nine month olds with facial deformities, and it was just awful, dead babies in jars, seriously. I’m not sure it was appropriate for me, let alone a six year old!!!
Anyway, after that we went on to see the elephant show, which was fantastic almost the entire way through. These elephants were unbelievably well trained, and could paint pictures, play darts, play soccer, basketball, pick up skittles, throw bowling balls at the skittles, walk on their hind legs and all sorts of cool things. We all bought carrots and bananas to feed them in between tricks, and it was all really fun and entertaining, until, predictably, disaster struck.
They had been doing basketball slam-dunks, and the last one to go was the baby elephant. As he took his run up, his front leg buckled, and he stumbled, lurched a couple of steps and then collapsed onto his side in the middle of the arena.
The trainer was yellling and trying to get him up again, and M.C. guy is being all cheery and chatting about lazy elephants, then the other trainers go over and they’re all trying to physically lift up this elephant. Then suddenly the music cuts out and there’s total silence as a vet sprints in with a bag, and horror spreads around the arena as the kids slowly realise that the baby elephant hasn’t moved at all since it went down.
I’m dead serious, this poor elephant is lying with its back to us, completely still, and the kids are starting to cry (alright, I was starting to cry too!!), and I’m thinking “Holy fuck! There’s a dead baby elephant over there, I just watched it die. How the fuck are we gonna get thirty kids out of here without them noticing the enormous dead elephant???”
Of course, it all turned out to be part of the show, and a big elephant came in and squirted it with water and the baby elephant got up, but it so wasn’t funny. I was literally crying and panicking about the kids. So not funny.
Well, alright, I am a very gullible wimp, but still!!
So, anyway, I’ve attached a cool picture of an elephant painting a picture for you as well.
Aside from that, I’ve just been packing, shopping for last minute pressies and stuff, taking lots of photos, and generally getting excited about going to Oz.
Things are much better at work now by the way – thanks for all your lovely suggestions though!! It was a bit weird for a couple of weeks, and I’ve been walking on eggshells around the office, but weirdly a recent tragedy has kind of balanced everything out again. On Saturday night, two of Olive’s (our receptionist) nephews were hit by a bus that ran a red light and they were both killed, and Jenny’s sister was diagnosed with cancer on Saturday too, so I think everybody’s thinking about the bigger picture just now and nobody cares about who fought with who or why.
So that’s all a bit sad, but at the same time its bringing everybody together so we’re all friends again trying to help out Olive any way we can (I stayed late to lock up last night so that Jenny could leave early to go to the funeral, and she’s being really nice to me now).
I’m hoping to have a really good last week, and I’ve got lots of lovely things planned for the weekend. In fact, I shall have to finish there, cos I haven’t cooked my tea yet, and my mate Suzie’s coming over to watch movies in half an hour, so I’d better get cracking!!
Hope you are all well and happy
love “yes, I’m a wimp, I cried when the elephant played dead” Maya

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