le cahier de kev

le cahier de kev

adventures fresh off the press

A Day At The Museum Part I

Summer is finishing up and we're transitioning into autumn.  The last month had been great spending time with family, catching up with friends, and getting immersed with Steven Universe.  I was pleasantly surprised at the depth of the story and how they fleshed out the characters for the current season.  I still remember seeing the creator Rebecca Sugar sing and talk during last year's Comic Con Panel.  It was my first time last year, but I was fortunate enough to see a lot of great talent and experience what Comic Con was all about.  It was quite overwhelming and there was so much to take in, but I had such a great time and met a lot of wonderful people.  I won't be attending this year, but maybe next year.  :)


My good friend Raizel and I met up in early August.  It was so nice since she's always here to show support to her children who are studying in the States.  It was nice to just talk and enjoy the scenery.  We didn't expect it to rain hard since the weather forecast stated that there may be a short drizzle.  Fortunately, we were inside the coffee shop when it began to rain.


We covered a lot of topics during our talk.  We showed each other food pictures, shared recipes. talked about family, and traveling.  One of the highlights of our conversation involved connecting with someone.  We discussed how with certain people you meet you can immediately "click" with them at the first meeting.  I'm sure many of you have experienced it where you talk to someone and everything flows naturally from the body language to the pace of the conversation.


We did take fun pictures together:


Smiles and Food at the café







It is fun sharing stories and enjoying each other's company.  This reminds me of a story that my high school American literature teacher told us.  She was having lunch with one of her good friends at a sandwich shop.  She said that the food was not good at all, but at the end of the conversation with her friend she noticed that she ate her entire sandwich.  Since she was so enthralled by the conversation and would take small bites from time to time, she didn't notice that she finished her sandwich.  Even if the surroundings or food may not be what we had expected, the company whom we are with can make a big difference.


So it was nice chatting with Raizel throughout the crazy weather.  We parted ways and planned to meet again over dinner at a later date.  As I called her to wish her a good night a few hours later, it started pouring as I was walking outside.  I quickly fumbled around my bag to open my umbrella.  We both had a good laugh out of it.


I also enjoyed some time off with family during the summer.  Family came to visit so we did the usual "touristy" things around New York.  It was going to be a day full of walking, but one place they wanted to see was The Museum of Natural History.  (Since there were so many pictures, I will divide this entry into two parts.  The first part will begin with the animal, space, marine, and geological exhibits.  Part II will look at the cultural, anthropological, public health, and dinosaur exhibits).


The first time I went was in 2009.  I forgot to charge my camera (I mistakenly thought that I had enough charge) and it died 15 minutes into the museum.  However, I was ready this time!  It was really fascinating, and I enjoyed taking my time looking at the exhibits.  I will let the pictures do the talking, but I definitely went full on "geek mode" when I entered the space exhibit.


Outside the Museum of Natural History



Dinosaur Bone Exhibit at the Lobby



Another View of the Dinosaur Bone Exhibit


Everything brought back memories.  I don't remember, but I think the admission fee was mandatory last time I went in 2009, but now it was pay what you would like.  After payment and getting our sticker badges, we headed inside.  Since everyone had different interests we all split up and planned to meet up at our designated spot in a few hours.


I started off at the animal exhibits (no they're not real lol).  I took a lot of pictures, but chose the ones that really stood out so that you won't have to scroll through a lot of them.


Alaska Moose



Grizzly Bear



The wildlife exhibits showcased many of the animals found in their usual habitats.  It was nice and I loved how the background highlighted their natural environment.


Afterwards, I went to the geological exhibit.


The Earth's History


Many of the exhibits showed weather patterns, different types of rock formations, and minerals (to name a few).  The screen displayed the current natural activity in the earth.  I took a shot of the current locations of earthquake activity.


Recent Volcanic and Earthquake Activity



After the geological exhibit, I went to the space exhibit.  There were a lot of fascinating things ranging from the moon to the stars and galaxies.  Before going down the stairs to see the exhibits, the first thing that I encountered was a figure of the moon.



Entering the Space Exhibit



The Moon



Information on the Moon



My weight on the moon: 22.9 lb (10.39 kg)


I loved the part where I weighed myself to see my weight on the moon!  From the moon, I went down the stairs and headed left to look at the information on galaxies.


Galaxies Exhibit


On the opposite side was the exhibit on stars.


Stars Exhibit


At the center I took a look at the star dust exhibit to read about its scientific foundations in the world today.


Star Dust Exhibit



I looked at the model planets and the space videos they played on the big screen.  Here is a shot of the Astronews information on the Sun.


Mercury passing between the Earth and the Sun



Image of the Whirlpool Galaxy



After the space exhibit, I went to the nature and floral exhibit.  I watched the potato diversity video of the Andes from the touch screen player.  It was nice since I got to sit down after walking so much. haha


Videos on Biological Documentaries 


This led to the exhibits on various flora.  I'm sure many of you are familiar with the big red flower on the top left.  It's the rafflesia which smells like rotting flesh.  If you played the game Animal Crossing, the rafflesia appears if you do not take care of the weeds in your town.


Various Flora


From there I headed to the arctic and marine exhibits.


Under The Sea!



Polar Bear








The Harbor Seal

Very adorable!



I love the ocean which is why I took my time looking at these exhibits and reading the information.  The atmosphere's lighting made it seem like you were at that place.



Magnified exhibit of Mosquito



I took a look at this mosquito exhibit because it discussed how insects played a role with spreading disease.  As you have heard recently, this summer Zika had been a problem as mosquitoes began spreading it in the Americas.  This exhibit discussed malaria and how it influenced the importance of public health in preventing the spread of the disease.



Jade Exhibit



The jade exhibit captured my attention as it had a lot of Buddhist works along with the science and history behind the trade, use, and formation of jade.



DNA Exhibit



The DNA exhibit looked into the genetics in which humans and chimps share similarities or have differences.  There was also a short explanation to the right on what DNA is and the basics of its components (e.g. nucleotide bases).



Comparative Genomics and Human Origins Laboratory



It was closed when I got there, but it reminded me of my laboratory courses during university.  Those were fun!


Ross Hall of Meteorites



I visited the Ross Hall of Meteorites to see the types of meteor formations in space.


Meteorites from an Asteroid


The above was one of the exhibits from the Ross Hall of Meteorites.  These meteorites came from the crust and core of an asteroid.  The details were informative and beautiful.


California Gold Exhibit



The California gold exhibit discussed the history of the gold rush in the mid 1800s when settlers came to California to mine for gold.  This was around the time when California became a state.


I continued looking at the mineral exhibits after reading up on the gold exhibit above.



Cuprite Exhibit



Fluorite Exhibit


It was really fascinating how the Earth can form such beautiful and unique geological wonders.  Just looking at the diversity in the colors and formations really makes you appreciate our world.  There were also a lot of minerals and gemstones that were exhibited.


Various Minerals





More Gemstones


Jade Artifacts


I loved that they expanded on the jade artifacts.  It brought back memories of when I took the East Asian Art class back when I was at university.



Brain Exhibit


The brain exhibit was a pleasant surprise as I was walking around.  I started off with my interests in behavioral neuroscience, but switched gears into public health and biomathematics.  The brain exhibit gave a brief overview of the role the brain plays (e.g. which side controls which function such as speech or movement).


The exhibits were still as fascinating as ever and the museum even had a public health exhibit called Countdown to Zero.  This will be covered in the second part of the entry.  This will be where I will finish Part I of the museum entry since there we covered so much already!


To conclude, I wanted to share a soundtrack with all of you.  The game is called Journey and the soundtrack was created by Austin Wintory.  The soundtrack is absolutely beautiful.  I highly recommend Track 1 (Nascence) and Track 17 (Apotheosis) because the songs can touch you on the inside.  However, I do think the entire sountrack is beautiful.  Click on the picture to listen to the Youtube playlist and support Austin's great work!


Journey Soundtrack



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