I know I promised a continuation of my tales from Orvieto for today’s post, but I thought I’d take a little break from the Italian adventures and share a recent outing that’s a little more local.

As you know, Finn McSpool recently moved to the U.S. from Ireland (although he’s thinking about packing his bags and returning after learning the results of our latest election). He’s done a little local exploring to Portland’s Japanese Garden, but this week was his first trip to see some local beasties at the Oregon Zoo. Late November may not be the best weather for wandering around a zoo, but Mr. Husband and I discovered a few years ago that on the Monday after Thanksgiving, you pretty much have the place to yourself.

I know many people hate zoos and think they’re cruel, but the Oregon Zoo is an outstanding steward for animal, environmental, and ecological issues, including education, research and protection. Their recent (huge) expansion of the elephant exhibit is not only eco-friendly (lots of clever energy recycling going on), but provides the elephants plenty of room to roam and play. okay, not an entire wilderness to roam through, but at least they’re not being slaughtered for their ivory.

Finn started out his day with a seemingly safe creature he found lounging near the zoo entrance

oregon zoo
Finn McSpool, meet Billy the Mountain Goat

Being a bit stubby in the leg department, Finn was fascinated by a few of the long-limbed creatures at the zoo.



One even decided to come over and check out his Irish visitor…


oregon zoo, giraffe
No Finn, you can’t ride him.

But this was all a bit tame for Finn. He wanted to see some dangerous beasts from the wilds of Africa!!

oregon zoo, porcupine
You’d think porcupines would know not to tail gate.

Alright, maybe African crested porcupines aren’t quite the dangerous creatures he had in mind. How about some more carnivorous African wildlife…

Finn doing his best David Attenborough impression.
Finn doing his best David Attenborough impression.


Hmmm…these lions seem to be a lot like the cats at home. Sleeping, lounging, yawning, stretching. Finn went out seeking more danger and he found it in the cheetah exhibit.

Oregon zoo, cheetah
Cheetahs, the supermodels of the feline world.
Finn, um, you may want to watch out.
Finn, um, you may want to watch out.
Finn, no really, I think you should move.
Finn, no really, I think you should move.
Finn? Finn!!?
Finn? Finn!!?

Once I traded a hunk of antelope steak for Finn, he decided active cats were scary and that the snoozing mountain lions were more suited to his adventure level…

Nap time, not a bad idea.

And, of course, after a day of exploring, there’s nothing like stopping off for a bit of lunch and a pint of local beer.


Next Saturday I’ll be back (I pinky swear this time) with an adventure that goes up, down, and all around Orvieto. And Wednesday, I’ll be showing off some of my holiday spirit – a rare species indeed.



And speaking of animals…

It doesn’t take much to read labels to learn which foods and other products use palm oil or its derivatives. You can then either boycott those products or do a quick web search to see if the manufacturers have dedicated themselves to using sustainably sourced palm oil. It only takes a few minutes and can mean a world a difference to the environment and to forest creatures.

For more info…

11 thoughts on “Beastie Meets Beasties at the Oregon Zoo

  1. Reblogged this on CrawCrafts Beasties and commented:
    Wow, it’s been a busy week here in Beastie Towers… AGAIN!
    Fortunately, not all of the global Beastie family are entangled in Christmas market preparations. So today I’m going to leave you in the capable hands (and paws) of Tammie and her mischievous monster companion Finn McSpool, as they have some close encounters with the residents of Portland Zoo. Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. He is quite the model, but he does let his fame get to his head sometimes and then there’s just no putting up with him! If you like him, you should check out his creator’s blog (and the adventures of other Beasties) at Crawcrafts Beasties – how Helen has the patience to make some of the Beasties she does just amazes me.

        Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.