21 February 2012

Trip to the aquarium.

Hello Susie! What did you do this fine Washington's Day with your paid day off? Well everybody, I spent the day with my friend Jenn and her lovely daughter Sadie. We went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium! It seems that so did a whole lot of people from all walks of life and from all over the world. I want to say thanks to Jenn for inviting me and to Jenn's dad for winning the tickets from 99.1 The Fox. I had not been to the aquarium since about 5th grade and had always wanted to go back but never really made the effort to go. I don't know why because the drive is not really that bad and not as far as I remember it being. (Probably had something to do with it being a school field trip, slow bus ride and several potty breaks.) I intend on going back later this year to check out their new Jellyfish Exhibit.

Check out a few of the videos I took of the Jellyfish while I was there:

I love jellyfish! I really wish I had taken more video while I was there but it was my first time trying out my camera in almost pitch black settings. I wasn't sure how well it would work. It worked out quite well, next time I plan to take more video.

And now a bunch of pictures from inside the aquarium:
A cute little seahorse checking himself out.

Here is another seahorse, kinda hard to make him out. His head is on the left side by the reed. Yeah he looks like a plant but he is NOT a plant. It's his natural cloaking device.

Here is another seahorse that is kinda tricky to spot. He is floating on by between to two rocks closer to the back rock on the right side.

These are not jellies.

Here is Sadie enjoying the jellies swim on by, it was too dark to get a picture of her giggling over how cute the jellies were. I think she really enjoyed the aquarium, I think she was more fond of fish than jellies.

This huge fish that everyone wanted a picture of is a sun fish... it's really ugly. And that is really why I took a picture of it because it was so yucky looking. I wanted to ask the other tourists why they were snapping pictures of the sun fish in hopes of hearing the same answer as mine, "Cause it's ugly!"

I could have sat in front of the jelly tanks all day long, mesmerized by their movement and beauty. But then who would put food on the table?! One of these days when I am a gazillionaire I will have a special little jellyfish cave for me to curl up in an ocean of beanbags to watch these little guys swim. I might have to hire staff for this because I don't know a single thing about caring for these exquisite creatures.

This penguin swam right up to say hi to Sadie, it was adorable. Some of the penguins were in a very playful mood and kept swimming up real close.

While Jenn was off finding stroller parking Sadie and I were at this tank for quite sometime, this is the "Nemo" tank. You can see a Dori in the background! There were some tiny "Nemo's" down lower wiggling around in anemones but there were so many kids crowded around exclaiming "Nemo" I didn't have the heart to move them to get a picture. I really wish I had; the clown fish looked absolutely adorable rubbing around on the anemone. Sadie did NOT want to leave this tank at all, till she realized momma was not a few feet away. So off we went to find Jenn!

This picture came from a tank that was made to mimic a dirty ocean floor. The pink stuff is covering a blue bottle and you can see another green bottle off to the side. It's really sad to see how much trash ends up in the ocean. Some of the trash can be used as homes or anchors for some sea life but for the most part it's bad juju.

I mentioned that the last time I was at the aquarium I was in 5th grade. I noticed there are play areas for kids of all ages. Little tots have a play area like the one Sadie is playing in. Others are geared for older kids and they even have the aquarium sprinkled throughout with interactive stations so you can learn about marine life and have fun. I especially love the touch pools where you can touch starfish, sea cucumbers and other tide pool marine life.

I learned that all of the birds in the aviary are rescues. They are injured birds that are taken in and cared for permanently. The guide in the aviary mentioned that the birds usually live 2 to 3 times longer than birds in the wild. There was a bird there that was 20 years old!!!! I must have seen it the last time I was there.

This huge sea bass weighs over 200 pounds! He is HUGE! I am so glad I was able to doctor this photo so you can see him. Most of the aquarium requests that you not use flash so this picture was much darker than it looks here. If you set your camera just right you can get some pretty good pictures in the dark. I wish I wasn't such a shaky person or they would have come out much cleaner looking.

More trash, probably beer bottles. Recycling is better and you get money back for taking in your recyclables. But really money is not the issue... You don't go into your neighbors house and dumb your trash... don't go into the fishes house and dump shit either!

Well that was about it for my adventure. I had a great time and it was a beautiful day with beautiful company. Thanks again Jenn for the lovely day and great conversation.

P.S. I am adding that documentary you told me about to my Netflix queue right now!

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