Thursday, March 11, 2010

A Field Trip

Yesterday, we spent the day at the California Academy of Sciences. I had never been there and wouldn't have thought about going if my friend hadn't invited us. I just assumed that my baby was too young for a place like that until my friend mentioned how her three year old loves the aquarium. An aquarium! I love aquariums.

The minute we stepped in, we were in the land of little people. Toddlers and school children with their backpacks ran around us. Mothers with strollers crowded the elevators. It was heavenly. We spent a few hours there staring at fish in florescent orange, hot pink, deep purple, and all other colors of the rainbow. We also hovered over the jellyfish pillar,the pen with the penguins, and the tank with the albino alligator. We watched a diver in a tank answer questions about tropical fish, as air bubbles streamed around him. My friend's three-year old dipped her hand into the touching pool and stroked a starfish. After lunch, she ran around the courtyard as her mother chased her.

Seeing so many little people makes me excited about our little T's upcoming years. I can't wait until he starts running around and touching the starfish. As he experiences the world, I want to go through it with him. In some ways, I feel like I did such a poor job of learning as I was going through school. Sure, I did my share of studying and getting good grades, but I don't know how much I really learned. I know how little I retained. There was a point in my life when I thought about reading junior high school text books just to find out what I forgot. Like most of my great ideas, it never came to fruition. But here is my chance to do it.

I loved the place so much that we went back today and bought an annual membership. The $99 pass makes so much more sense than paying $25 each visit. It's unfortunate that the tickets are so pricey, especially when the place is obviously geared toward children.

Anyway, today, I strapped Little T to my chest in the Baby Bjorn, facing out. We stood a good while in front of the enormous tanks and each time a colorful fish swam by, Little T kicked out his legs in excitement. Could we have a marine biologist in the making? Who know how these early days may shape his interests. I would love to help him figure out his passion, and if it means wearing out our membership, so be it. I just hope he doesn't come to me 22 years later asking me to review his law school application.


  1. We had a company holiday party there a few years ago, and it was awesome! If I lived closer, I would totally get my money's worth out of a membership. Good for you!

  2. Sounds like you're in better spirits than you were this morning!

  3. I just bought a membership to the Oakland Zoo, which has cross-membership with a bunch of other zoos and aquariums. I don't work on Mondays -- we should get our sons together and go to the aquarium and/or zoo! :)

    My son just started being interested in Mobi, our family dog, so I thought he might be interested in animals. Turns out, the animals were too far away for him to really care. He did enjoy the foliage and people though! I think he'll love the aquarium.