Authored by Vince Russell on 22 January 2006 at 07:20PM
Current rating: 3 out of 5 stars!
Filed under: Vince Goes Ape

Vince Kong visits London Zoo

Vince Kong catching the latest news on the train

I'm a big fan of the 21st of January, it was the day I was born after all, so to celebrate in style, I arranged a trip to London Zoo dressed in my gorilla outfit!

As before, persuading Lucy was very tricky, and I must shamefully admit I used loads of blackmail and a heavy reliance on the phrase "but it's my birthday!" to force her to be part of this. To her credit though, she threw herself into the role and was brilliant but unfortunately I'm now on the lookout for a new cameraperson.

In the week building up to the Zoo visit, Lucy phoned London Zoo and explained what I was up to, they said that I wouldn't be allowed in because I would scare the animals, and a good few humans too no doubt, but I decided to go anyway and just change when I got there.

Vince Kong monkeying around

We left the house on Saturday morning to make the hour long trip to London Zoo, the plan being to take a train to Waterloo, then a tube to Camden followed by a short walk to the Zoo. Twickenham train station was good fun, we met a young woman who wanted to take my picture about a hundred times, a young girl would was scared of me at first, then seemed to decide that I was just an idiot in a suit so she'd try and scare me instead, and a young boy and his mum, who ran half the length of the platform just so they could be in the same carriage as me!

This little boy was joined by two more kids when we reached Richmond. We had a bit of banter with them, I sneezed about 23 times, and settled down to read the paper. Sarah joined us few stop later and greeted me with a "Happy Birthday Vince!", which prompted one of the children to turn to his my and say "Mummy, it's the gorilla's birthday", I was having a little chuckle at this when it was followed up by one of the other boys saying to his mum, "Mummy, I don't think it is King Kong, King Kong is much bigger!".

When we arrived at Waterloo I was so happy to be off the train, we'd only been on there for 30 minutes but I was cooking in the suit, so to finally be out in the fresh air was, well, like a breath of fresh air!

Vince Kong at London Zoo

The tube journey was largely uneventful, I couldn't resist hanging on to the bars like a monkey though. There were a few comments and laughs on the way out of the tube station and on the walk to the Zoo, a lady on the other side of the road shouted across asking if she could take my picture, I had no problem with this, so the two chaps with her ran across the road to stand near me, apparently they are all from Brazil, it makes me smile to think of them showing their friends the photos when they get back home and saying, "yeah, this is just some guy walking around as a gorilla".

We finally arrived at the Zoo and posed outside for some photo's. We chatted to some of the little kids, some of them seemed terrified, others were just plain mystified. We thought we'd have a crack at getting in with the suit on but when we asked, they just said no. We asked if we could have a photo taken by the ticket booth and again they said no. Not to worry though, I changed out of the suit and went in as a regular human being, I don't think it made much difference, I'm sure scared the crap out of some of the animals with the strange Vince-suit that I was wearing!

Photo's from the big day

Vince Kong at Twickenham station

Vince Kong frightened at Twickenham station

On the way to Waterloo

At Waterloo, waiting for a tube

On the tube

Monkeying around on the tube

At Camden with some brazilians

Finally arrived at the zoo

Saying hello to kids!

Authored by Vince Russell on 22 January 2006 at 07:20PM
Current rating: 3 out of 5 stars!
Filed under: Vince Goes Ape

Comments about "Vince Kong visits London Zoo"

Lucy said

Brilliant! What a laugh we had. My favourite moment was the Brazilian chaps racing across the road to have their photo taken with you. They didn't speak English, but words were not needed - they were lovin' it!
x

23 January 2006 at 11:05AM

Jason said

Fantastic!! What dod the real Gorillas think of you, if you went in that was?

I love the tube shot! Didn't know they had Monkey frames on the tube. Hope you washed your hands before attempting that stunt too. You don't want to give your arse disease to all the commuters now do you!

23 January 2006 at 11:49AM

Antony said

Good one Vince. Very entertaining. I'm up for the photographer caper if you throw in a free banana.

23 January 2006 at 12:44PM

Vince's mum said

so when you visit me in Cusco are you bringing the suit? Maybe I can give you a temporary job behind the bar increase my profits - or you could be a guest dance teacher maybe?

23 January 2006 at 02:27PM

Vince Russell said

I've just been sent this link...

http://www.usatoday.com/travel/news/2005-08-26-london-zoo_x.htm

...you'd think if London Zoo are up to this sort of thing, then a chap wandering round in a gorilla suit would be fine. Apparently not though!

24 January 2006 at 08:38AM


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