Saturday, April 30, 2011

Field Trip: The Sequel!

In the normal course of events, I make it up to Hutch every couple of years or so, whenever I start feeling like it's been too long since I went to the fair. Going up twice in one month is unprecedented. This time I went up with the Barricks for Dad's birthday to see Tornado Alley at the Cosmosphere. The movie is entertaining and educational (and is narrated by Bill Paxton, which gave it that touch of Twister authenticity). Furthermore, with my newfound tornado expertise, I'm convinced that what we had in Lawrence in March 2006 was an actual small tornado. Microburst, my ass.

But for me, the highlights of the day were not movie-related. First there was this excellent sock picture:
Socks in Space!
If you're not a sock knitter, this doesn't make sense and you'll just have to trust me when I tell you that this is a pretty cool picture. Those of you who are actually acquainted with this particular sock will notice that significant progress was made in the car on the way up. Now that we're home again, Sockie is ready for her toe.

Moving on. . . .

The second highlight was seeing the two pieces of the Berlin Wall displayed at the Cosmosphere. I remember hearing that we were getting some pieces, but had forgotten about it. The Wall coming down was probably the first politically important event of my lifetime with obvious historical significance that I was old enough to remember and at least partially understand. So rounding a corner and running smack into pieces of the wall was literally breathtaking. 

 Although the display kinda sorta makes sense in the context of the Cold War space race, it does seem odd to display them at the Cosmosphere in a weirdly dark corner. I would think there might be more appropriate venues. I suppose, though, that they are at the Cosmosphere specifically because they're the property of the Smithsonian.

I thought my fiber-loving, needleworking friends would be interested in the following tidbit:

I haven't been able to find any other information on the "little old ladies" (extensive 2-minute Google searches just aren't what they used to be), but I'd be willing to bet that these women were probably a variety of ages and of more or less regular size. 

And then there was supper at Bogey's, a very good, very cheap burger place next to the Fairgrounds that my sister knew about from her time working at the Hutch hospital when she was in nursing school.

American Bliss
See the "DP" on the cup? That stands for "Dr. Pepper." That right there, my friends, is a Dr. Pepper shake. It seems unbelievable that I had to wait 34 years to taste a Dr. Pepper shake. The technology that could create this marvel is at least as impressive to me as the technology that sent men to the moon.

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