monkey jungle

The following is a series of handwritten letters my grandmother filed in a scrapbook for me documenting my visit to Disney World in the spring of 1975. She wrote the entries in my voice as if I was telling them to my parents back home. I am so grateful for this gift. I call it a blog, because it is no different than what I am doing nearly 40 years later when I archive the stories of my kids.

Sunday, April 20, 1975

Well here I am at 8 o’clock at night and I am in bed watching Walt Disney. We had a long day.

I woke up at 7:15 and my Nannie put on cartoons for me on the tv. Then I got Florida orange juice and a donut in bed. When everyone woke up, we got ready and left at 8:30 for breakfast. I had pancakes.

Then we went south to Monkey Jungle. We had a whole lot of fun. The people walk through cages and the monkeys run wild. We fed them peanuts and raisins. We were the first people in the jungle today. I was the first to get my hand stamped. [Admission in 1975: $1.25. Admission in 2013: $24]

The monkeys followed us to get the peanuts. There were all kinds, even gorillas and chimpanzees. They were so much fun. We went to the swimming hole where the monkeys put on a show. They dove underwater for their food. Then the chimps put n a show, They rode cards, bikes, played the piano, and guitar. After that we went to the rainforest which represents one just like in South America. In the forest, the monkeys and people are together. The monkeys run all over the plance. We stayed all morning til 11:45.

The rest of the day wasn’t much fun as we had to start driving to get to Disney World. We stopped for lunch. Then we stopped at an orange grove for a drink of orange juice. We drove to Avon Park where got our motel and in 10 minutes we were all in the pool. Karen, Nan, and I stayed for nearly 2 hours. We had fun. Karen was trying to teach Nan how to swim.

We went to a restaurant in the town for dinner. Then Grandpa took us for a short drive. We saw an orange and grapefruit orchard. Grandpa stopped so I could go and look at them. A man came by and said we could pick some oranges and grapefruit. Nan said she would like to pick a trunkful. We each took 3 oranges, but no grapefruit. I had the juice out of one – oh they are so good. I am so excited tomorrow we go to Disney World and are sleeping 2 nights there. Grandpa says we can go to Disney World for 2 days.

Oh yes, we saw 2 alligators at Monkey Jungle and outside our motel door a truck and a big turtle in the back.

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