Friday, May 13, 2016

Amazing Sea World Experience

Reagan was still asleep at 7:30am this morning when we had to get her up and start getting her dressed. She was serious, but good. So we proceeded with our plan...on to Sea World! We were in the car and on our way to San Antonio by 8:15am. We took the toll road and avoided any potential traffic on I35...no traffic, but it is a long drive. Both kiddos were good in the car.  When we got to the park around 10:45am, we first peeked in on a seal show that was going on, but it was way too loud and crowded. We then started walking thru the park and heading toward the penguin exhibit. Once inside, it was clear that Reagan was not going to be able to see the penguins...the rails of the moving sidewalk were too high and she couldn't see over them in her wheelchair and the area behind the sidewalk was just too far away. I noticed a little walkway in front, right beside the glass, that would be perfect for her to view them but it said authorized personnel only. I didn't see any employees at the time other than the old lady working in the gift shop. I asked her and initially she said no, but I asked her if she could call someone to see if they might allow it. A trainer came out to meet us and she couldn't have been more hospitable. She immediately asked if instead we'd like to MEET a penguin! What?!?! Of course we would! She took us around the back of the building and let us meet a penguin. Reagan and Ryan both got to pet it and it even sat on Reagan's lap!! It was unbelievable! So amazing. Then afterward she took us back inside and let us push Reagan up close to the glass where she could see the penguins swimming underwater! It was perfect! And if that wasn't enough, she took it upon herself to call over to the Shamu stadium and see if she could arrange for us to get closer to the killer whales (since the handicap seating is located at the top of the stadium, she knew Reagan wouldn't be able to see them from there)! There was a show that was just beginning, so we headed over, watched the show, and then one of the killer whale trainers met up with us after the show and took us down ground level where Reagan could see the whales up close! The stadium was empty and it was just us, two trainers, and two adorable killer whales! This brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. What a magical experience! It felt like we were on a Make a Wish trip, the way everyone was bending over back ward to make this such a memorable experience for her! Unbelievable! After this we did "attempt" to go see the dolphins but that was a disaster. Apparently they are building this awesome exhibit that opens this weekend that will have huge viewing windows where you can see the dolphins swimming underwater. Well right now they have them in this set up that is a 15min hike away and even then you can only see them from afar....huge disappointment. Definitely wished we would have skipped that one. After that we were pretty spent and after the awesome experiences we already had, anything would be a disappointment. Plus it was getting close to 3 and we had wanted to try to leave by 3. We started walking back to the front of the park but Ryan was insistent on getting a balloon (he had seen a carnival game that involved popping the balloons and ever since he had been asking for one). Well apparently they don't sell balloons in the park (or allow straws) because it poses a threat to the animals. But Ryan did not understand this and he did not want anything else...believe me, we tried. Well he had a MAJOR meltdown as we were leaving/getting into the car. Refusing to walk and crying hysterically and then refusing to stay in his carseat and sliding down onto the floor.  It was a mess. Oh well, I guess everything can't go perfectly! He finally calmed down watching some PBS cartoons on my iphone and eventually dozed off and slept (not long enough though...he woke up pretty cranky half way home). Reagan was good the entire time and the rest of the night. I think we all will sleep well tonight! What a wonderful day! Thank you Sea World for these once in a lifetime memories! 





























video
Make sure to watch this video on a computer (it won't come up on my iphone)...it's worth the trouble! Amazing!





A little swim (the first swim of the year) to relax after a long day!

3 comments:

Reagan Leigh said...

FYI...Any negative or anti-Sea World comments will be deleted. This is not the place for them. Thank you.

Clarissa R. West - Writer said...

Love it! So special!

Clarissa R. West - Writer said...

Love it! So special!