About 4 months ago, my daughter Dylan’s Brownie Troop announced that they were going to do a sleepover at a local aquarium.
“How cute! What fun mother/daughter time!” I thought, somehow ignoring the fact that I would be almost 7 months pregnant.
The cost for my daughter and me to attend was $120 which I assumed meant we would get to pick our own lobsters out of one of their tanks. This proved not to be accurate although I did get to pick my own pizza slice.
They lock you in the place for 16 hours. I mean, you get to enjoy the aquarium for 16 hours!
At first things went well. My daughter was having a lot of fun making fossils, running relay races and playing with her friends.
And then she fell into the stingray/ shark tank.
This is the tank…
Now I didn’t see her fall in because I was doing something very important like feeding a baby seal or maybe just talking to my friend Emily (the details aren’t important) but a friend of Dylan’s quickly found me.
By the time I got to the tank, Dylan was out and very shaken.
Apparently she had leaned over the tank to pet a stingray (whose stingy things are removed) and she slipped and fell in. Her entire body was submerged except for her boots. She scrambled out of there and was totally unhurt but just very embarrassed, scared and cold.
We changed her clothes and I promised her that “swimming with stingrays and sharks” was not something everyone gets to experience and this was a real bonus on the night. She recovered…
Then it came time to sleep.
I highly recommend sleeping at an aquarium with tons of young kids if you like to sleep on hard floors, with a lot of light and constant noise. I had brought sleeping bags and mats but I (who do not complain much about being pregnant) was beyond uncomfortable.
And other moms (who are obviously far more brilliant than me) brought these gigantic blow up mattresses, sheets and comforters. And wine. And I can only assume their own personal masseuses although I didn’t actually witness that.
Anyway, we slept by the jellyfish tank for about 5 hours, got up in the morning refreshed and energized and then saw the IMAX movie, “Born To Be Wild” which is beyond cute. It’s impossible to watch a baby elephant drink milk from an enormous baby bottle and not leave the theater a little happier.
So if you ever have the opportunity to do something like this, here are my tips…
1. Don’t be pregnant
2. Bring your own Queen or King Size mattress
3. Bring an eye mask and ear plugs
4. Bring a box of wine
5. Don’t let your child swim with sharks
6. Bring a change of clothes in case she does