You are walking down the street, minding your own business. Your thoughts flit aimlessly about, lightly hopping from one irreverent and irrelevant topic to the next. You roll a slightly stale piece of chewing gum about your mouth, eking out the last of what little mint residue remains. As you approach your home, you begin to think about what you might have for dinner; perhaps a bolognese, maybe something involving that kilogram of ham that's been lying about the fridge.
Suddenly, from behind a sort of bush, a man leaps out, blocking your path. Your breath catches in your throat, you lock eyes and the air crackles with an electric tension. Before you can even begin to try wrack your brains to remember the lessons imparted to you in that one mandatory self-defence class you took in transition year, the man speaks. "How much would you pay to have a look at a gecko!?" His words hang heavy in the air. You stutter a reply, "Eh- excuse me?". The man, becomes more irate, and you notice a rustling underneath his coat, the rustling of a living being underneath the fabric. "What are you an idiot?" He hisses, "I've got a gecko, how much would you pay me to have a look at it?"
You try to let what he has just asked of you sink in. You don't have any particular immediate urge to look at a gecko, but at the same time, you are interested in animals and do find geckos a particularly exotic creature. What's more, you can't fully discount the possibility that the man might become violent should you decline his offer. You do some quick mental arithmetics, and ask, "Is it fully grown?". The man nods. "About two quid?", you suggest. "Don't play hardball mate! This is a quality gecko.", he retorts.
You eventually agree that a fiver seems about reasonable and, once you have Revoluted him the cash, he unveils the gecko from underneath his long, beige coat. It is a marvellous specimen, stocky and powerful while still maintaining a sense of grandeur and elegance. You admire its beauty. The gecko licks one of its own eyeballs. You lick one of the gecko's eyeballs. The man insists that you pay him extra for that.
Thankfully, the above scenario is largely a rarity these days. The majority of the time, people encounter exotic animals on their own terms, by visiting a zoo. And, while you may have your own thoughts on how much you would pay to see a gecko, or indeed, any other animal, Dublin Zoo charges a flat rate for admission.
Well, to celebrate World Animal Day, Dublin Zoo will be selling tickets at half price this coming weekend as well as the following weekend. So, to avail of this - and I don't deploy this phrase without some reservation and regret - shit hot deal, you simply need to rock up to Dublin Zoo on the 5th/6th/12th/13th of October to get yourself some half-price tickets.
The discounted tickets are only available to be purchased in person at the Dublin Zoo Ticket Office. The deal is only applicable to full price adult, child and family tickets and not groups or concession tickets. A standard adult ticket costs €19.50 and will therefore be available for €9.75 during this promotion. Visit their website for more details.
World Animal Day takes place on October 4th each year and is intended to celebrate, and raise awareness for endangered species and the importance of supporting animal welfare and maintaining natural habitats.
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