Monthly Archives: June 2013

St Louis Day 2 – The Arch, Science Center, History Museum

I started out the day setting the alarm for 5:00am to catch the sunrise. ┬áIn my raved and under-researched mind, I imagined the sun coming up in the middle of this…

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

As you can tell, that completely failed to work out. Instead, it managed to come up about 40 degrees to the left. Even so, it wasn’t a bad backdrop.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

Despite the huge miss in estimation, the Missouri dawn was worth seeing.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

Hours later, the kids requested the St. Louis Science Center as their first stop. After yesterday’s photos, I felt the zoom lens was more than a bit soft and went with the fixed 60mm macro instead. This isn’t a bad choice for a museum as it’s the fastest bit of glass I have, but the fixed focal length does tend to make my photos more centered on close-ups and textures.

I tend not to take a lot of photos of fixed displays, but these seemed amusing.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis
From 6-11-2013 St Louis
From 6-11-2013 St Louis

The kids weren’t overly amused by the science center; there was a distinct sense of “Is that it?” So we moved quickly on to the Missouri History Museum. Outside there was a van for the local senior living center. The kids’ pointed out, rather amusingly, that it should be “SunSET Senior Living”

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

Everyone seemed fascinated by the 1904 Fair exhibition.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis
From 6-11-2013 St Louis
From 6-11-2013 St Louis

And of course it’s not a visit to St. Louis without seeing the Spirit.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

After a couple of hours of history, the kids were ready to move on again. The next step was supposed to be the Frank Lloyd Wright house but the picker of said location failed to let us know to make reservations. So we ended up at the sculpture park instead.

We all had endless fun with this giant eyeball.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

This huge red… something…? Was … well, huge?

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

It at least attracted the attention of some model and her photographer. In the spirit of taking pictures of photographers…

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

The whole thing was rather avant garde

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

This representative from the land of fairie has wings made of airplane propeller blades. Rather apt.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

The last order of business for the day was the Arch monument itself.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

I was here a few years ago and I can’t help but feel that I took the EXACT same photos but with better equipment. I’m half afraid to look.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

OK, I know I took this one. I’m hopeful the color’s better this time.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

I love this one but it’s fairly hard to tell what it is. Shot at 8mm fish-eye directly under the arch.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

This time we actually bothered to go up and see the sites from the top of the arch. Not for the claustrophobic that’s for sure.

From 6-11-2013 St Louis

And that seems to be… now that I look back on it, pretty much the day that was.

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St Louis – Day 1: Forest Park, St. Louis Zoo

So yesterday my daughter’s mother was off getting Honeymooned by her new husband so we all took off for St. Louis. In general, when I vacation it tends to be simply going from place to place, wherever the wind will blow. In this case, with three kids along, I let them go wherever they would blow. Whenever asked, “Where are we going?” my steadfast answer was, “you tell me.” Simply put, it was my job to keep them fed and away from the police station. Aside from that, whatever the popular vote called for was in order.

The first destination requested was the zoo. I handled parking and after that the kids were in charge of selecting destinations, planning their time and, most amusingly to me, navigation.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

At some point Amanda will stop giving me these silly looks because inevitably they’re captured forever.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Eric is looking stoic as always.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

First order of business was the primates, I’m always struck by the soulful humanity in their eyes. It astounds me that any hunter could ever look into these eyes and think it was right to kill such a creature in cold blood.

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Their hands are practically human.

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And in some cases, their faces almost prayerful.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

And touchingly somber. Pity they’re locked up.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Izzy, of course, finds a way to get attacked by a tree.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Little bowling pin prairie dogs. Amanda asked, “Are prairie dogs supposed to be that fat?!” Sadly my knowledge of prairie dog dietary needs is woefully insufficient to speculate.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

One mustn’t forget the flamingos.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

or the pelicans…(?) either.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

The penguin house was cool (no pun intended) but rather dark for much good photography. However there was no shortage of silhouettes.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

But the puffins were slightly better lit.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

I realized while editing a series of rather dull zebra photos, that I’ve neglected textures as of late. It seems well nigh time to put that to rights.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Mr. Camel has rather a grievous overbite.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

And caught in the right instant, ostriches look to be laughing…

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

… but they quickly become shy after their outbursts.

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Since the children somehow showed up with no proper footwear and only flip-flops available for several miles of walking, this fountain was a godsend for tired, hot and grumpy feet.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Various St. Louis landmarks are in evidence.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

This scene struck me as rather apt, though depressing. All the children have run away to play, leaving only their shoes and water bottles behind…. well, that and all manner of electronic gadgetry.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

Arches in relief.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

I put on my most friendly voice with the front desk clerk to move us up to the top floor. She stated categorically that “none of the rooms have a good view” but this view from the hallway is nothing to sneeze at. I’ll just set my alarm for 5:00am and we’ll see where the sun comes up amongst this tangle of humanity.

From 6-10-2013 St Louis

And that’s the day that was.

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