It’s a mild but sunny day off and you’ve decided to treat yourself to a day at the zoo. Having bought your ticket, you are stood at the entrance consulting your map. So many possibilities! But where will you go first?
You enter the lemur enclosure and watch as they run around you. One perches on the post next to you and sticks its tongue out. Adorable! You reach for your fancy new phone and line up the perfect shot…
Bash! The lemur has swiped your phone and it’s running too the far end of the enclosure. You look around but there is no zookeeper in sight.
You sigh, just your luck. But you’ve paid for entry and it’s your first day off in a long time, so you grudgingly decide to go see something else. Leaving the enclosure in a huff you look again at the map.
The zookeeper gives you a pair of gloves and beckons you through. The little penguins waddle up and crowd around you. You follow her instructions and they gobble the fish up. What an experience!
You turn around to follow to the zookeeper out. You suddenly notice the sensation of something soft underfoot but it’s too late, you feel yourself sliding and throw out your arms to stabilise yourself. Just as you think you might have saved it, you fall backwards, landing with a splash! You hear gasps (and a few laughs) from the crowd. It isn’t deep, and you manage to climb out without trouble, but you’re drenched from head to toe.
The zookeeper pulls you through the gate and grimaces. "You must have dropped one - I didn’t spot it. Here, we’ll get you a towel and a change of clothes.
You give yourself a quick shower and change into the clothes - the zookeeper apologises and says they only have uniform. It doesn’t fit very well, but it’s dry at least.
You tell her not to worry and that it’s clearly just not your day.
But that must surely be the end to your misfortune, you think, as you wonder what to do next.
You look at your watch - just about time to go see the bears before lunch. You spend a while enjoying watching them interact - this was more what you were picturing when you woke up this morning. You do notice that one of the climbing poles seems a bit wobbly as a young bear descends.
You spot a zookeeper nearby, although his demeanour is very different to the one you encountered at the penguin enclosure. He’s swearing away as he struggles to close a bag packed with too many tools.
Go up to him and mention the wobbly pole
I just can’t deal with any more hassle today - I’m going for lunch
You head up to the jacket potato stall and ask for a jacket potato with cheese and fried onion. The woman at the steak looks confused as you offer a five pound note. “Don’t you have your ID badge?” she asks. You try to explain but before you’ve got more than a few words out she sighs and says “Oh, go on, just this once though - don’t forget it again” and hands you the jacket potato. She turns around and starts chopping some ingredients.
You head over to a seat feeling a little guilty, but then you have been through a lot today so maybe you should take the little wins. The potato is a bit undercooked and the skin a bit limp, but it fills you up at least.
You notice that you’re not far from the reptile house. You head over thinking about the great lizard documentary you saw last week. As you arrive you notice with annoyance a sign saying “Closed for lunch - Reopens at 2pm”. The door is still ajar though, and nobody is around.
You fight your instincts and decide against entering - you can always come back later. You wonder round a few enclosures, noticing it getting quieter and quieter until its just you.
As you watch the spider monkeys someone runs up to you with a look of concern. “I can’t find the way out! Where do I go?”. She looks around anxiously. You shrug, “Over that way I think…” you say somewhat doubtfully, pointing over a little bridge. She nods and starts running.
What a strange woman, you think.
You look at your watch and realise the reptile house should be open again, but just as you catch sight of it you start to see smoke coming from the direction of the food stalls. You run over and see the burger stand in flames - but nobody is around. You reach for your phone to call for the fire brigade before realising you lost it this morning. Just as you go to head for the exit you see the jacket potato stand become engulfed - and with a sudden wind change your way back through to the exit is blocked.
You run down the only path available to you - you can get out this way too, it will just take longer.
But just before you reach the bear enclosure you are stopped by a loud shout - you turn around and freeze on shock as you are confronted with a gun. But wait, it seems a bit narrow for a gun…
“What are you still doing here! Everyone should be following evacuation procedures! Christ - all these bloody seasonal staff! We’re missing two still.”
You look over at the bear enclosure and see two bears still on the ground. The fencing is dented where the wobbly pole has fallen and smashed against it. Ah, you think, tranquilliser gun.
“What are you still standing here for?! Get out!”
You’re not far now - the archway above the gift shop just in sight. Ah…
A bear steps on to the path in front of you. It looks you in the eye and bares its teeth. You look around desperately, but your options are minimal.
There’s a door to a small building with the key still in…