The look on Max’s face says it all. “Dad, what are we doing here?!”
For this weeks instalment of Mystery Monday’s my fiancé had sent us to Bird World.
Many years ago, Bird world in Farnham, Surrey was a massively popular attraction for families to enjoy a day out. This was back when the likes of places such as Thorpe Park were little more than a farm with a couple of mediocre rides.
I can’t remember the last time I visited Bird World. But now, in the middle of winter, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for the place. It was like walking into a ghost town. Hundreds of caged birds from all over the globe with no spectators to witness their beauty. Upon walking into reception, even the girl behind the counter seemed surprised to see another human being. Two if you include Max. Admission for one adult was around £6.50, not too bad at all. “Would you like some food to feed the birds?” Due to how quiet it was they probably needed a good meal so yes, another couple of quid. Then Max sees the cars lined up. “Carrrrrr!” Dammit. Another £5 for the hire. Probably the best money I spent too seeing as I didn’t have the buggy to push him around in. So I’ve now spent more than I had originally been pleased to but I now have a very happy Max.
In we go.
The first sign of life we see is a tonne of ducks on a half frozen pond, this is great, I could have just walked around the corner from my house to see ducks! We fed a few and moved on, even Max wasn’t interested at this point. Next, we come across two reindeers, one brown, one white. Not birds but very impressive to see! Wait…whats that over there? Other human beings! A young couple walking around with about as much interest in what they can see as I would have if I was sent to a Justin Bieber concert.
My fiancé had told me that at 3:30pm it was time for the main event. Ok this could be promising. Maybe Santa will be putting the random reindeers to use? I was way off. It turned out to be penguin feeding time. I was still fairly excited to see this because at least Max would enjoy seeing the penguins go crazy, whilst I learn some interesting facts from the keeper presenting the show. Again, we were the only ones at the feeding event. We stood in the cold for roughly twenty minutes waiting to be amazed by the sceptical. It was a very long wait, however I did manage to witness a couple of stalk like birds having a fight over their places in the tree. The moment had arrived. The large wooden door swung open. Out walks a young keeper with a bucket of fish and a mother and her daughter. Wait. What?! Did we miss something here? I could have sworn that Max and I were the only ones in the park yet we managed to miss the invite! Anyway so what happened next was even more disappointing. Handfuls of fish were thrown at the penguins and not even a “HELLO PENGUIN LOVERS!” was announced over the tannoyed. So much for the facts.
So after leaving midway through the feeding frenzy, I sped my way around what was left to see and we said our goodbyes to Bird World.
It is such a shame that such a big, interesting place does not have much appeal to people anymore. Usually I hate being in over crowded places but this one definitely needs some life injected into it to give it a more enjoyable experience. I’m sure in the summer it’s a great place to visit. On the weekend. At peak times. But unfortunately its not one for this time of year.
Lets see what next Monday brings…