Several years ago a baby was born at the San Diego Zoo. I was lucky enough to visit there when he was a newborn, on a sunny SoCal day, and I went to the Lowland Gorilla’s exhibit to see if I could grab a little peek at the baby boy. The habitat was the first place I made a bee line to and it is a far ways from the front entrance, so it took a little bit of time to find the gorillas. I enjoyed strolling by the other wonderful animal habitats, through a lush jungle of tropical green until I saw, just ahead where these majestic animals are cared for, I walked a bit further to the outdoor public seating area, where large glass windows give an unobstructed view into the lives of some of our closest animal relatives. I walked straight up to the glass, off to the side, where no one was seated (I didn’t want to block anyone from seeing the gorillas). I remember thinking, I want to get as close as I possibly can to see baby Frank.
I kind of put my face against the glass and looked all around, there were large animals and a huge silverback, and then, a flash of fur that bumped into the glass, right where I was standing, a mere inch away from my nose, standing on a tiny ledge inside the enclosure was his face, his eyes looking into my eyes, my eyes looking into his beautiful brown love filled eyes, my Frank. We looked deep at each other, I wanted to cry. We made faces at each other, our eyes smiled. He was calm for the whole minute plus he stood there looking at me, and I did not, could not breathe. I was mesmerized by an 18″ baby gorilla just an inch away from my face. If the glass was not there I would of taken him into my arms and nuzzled him close and said, “I love you”.
Our exchange was finally interuppted after more than a minute by the grunts of the silverback who also could see a kind of energy exchange, our intimate moment that was occuring between his baby and this random blonde woman. Our grinning and winking and smiling finally had to end and Frank scurried away, looking back one last time “to make sure I was real”, OK I made that part up but every other single thing happened exactly like this and I am so glad I was able to share a precious moment with Frank. I will never forget Frank and one day I hope I will see him again, although I won’t hope for it to happen again this way, because afterall it would never be the same.