Esther was out in the Wild West doing her thing, seeing new things and we, the great unwashed, were stuck in the cultural black hole of the universe under a leaky sky watching the grass grow before our very eyes. We could have just stayed at home and endured, but we all needed to see something other than computer screens and the digital corpses of our enemies strewn before us (lamenting of the women optional).
Our destination was the Anniston Museum of Natural History. We last visited on another sans-mom trip back on December 31, 2010. We purchased a family membership at that time and it was this membership that got us in free at the Adventure Science Center and the Space and Rocket Center.
|Hello, zeeba neighba.|
|Ben watches the penny smusher.|
We perused the gift shop and I picked up and put down many shiny things that I considered would look interesting in my cubicle. The prehistoric section that you'd normally walk through first was shut down due to renovations and so we had to walk through all widdershins. The boys were ahead of Chan and me and were looking at something in the display with a strange sense of wonderment and amusement. This is what they saw:
Clearly these are labeled as "clay dolls". And yet clearly they are what can only be described as testicular fetishes. Something was going on in the Amazon River Basin back in 1946, but I'm not quite sure what.
Having just finished listening to the audio version of American Gods, by Neil Gaiman, I had to linger in the Egyptian section just a little longer than usual.
|Mortician to the gods.|
Jake described this as "Wolverine's adamantium-skulled house cat".
Ben, always willing to pose for anything.
Remember the raft trip we took back in June? I mentioned that the kids were practicing hold their butts out of the water to avoid being bitten by gar. Here he is, in person, the great fresh water bitter of butts himself:
|Place buttocks here.|
Something about this display makes me laugh. It's like the antelope-thing is saying "where's your fancy bi-pedal stance and tool-making skills now, monkey boy?"
Here's the obligatory "hey, put your head in that" shot. Looking back I made Jake do it the previous trip.
When you put a coin the in the giraffe is laughs. The kids forgot about this and they all jumped. Worth the nickel.
Here are two flowers whose names Esther might not even know.
The birds of prey trail outside the museum has these cool tiles on the archways that mark the entrance/exit to the trail. For some reason, I really like these. There are several with the tracks of wild animals, some with smalls sculpted representations of the animals themselves and others with the leaves of native plants.
The birds are in shelters that shade most of the sunlight on a clear day and this was nothing of the sort, so I only have this one good shot of the Great Horned Owls huddled in a corner looking like ticked-off cats.
After the museum I took the kids to one of the local Chinese buffets, as a treat. The funniest thing that happened there was me accidentally eating frog legs. Now I never have to do that again.
Finally, Ben vs. Jell-o.
All the pictures from the day can be seen in my gallery here.