Thursday, December 27, 2012

Visit to Philly and the Franklin Institute

The Goofs are having a less than ideal winter break.  MamaGoof has been called to LA on family business leaving the little Goofs in the hands of yours truly.  They miss their mom and kind of want to do something over their winter break (not that they hate watching TV and breaking in their new electronics.)

So I arranged to take them to Philadelphia.  I promised not to overwhelm them with boring history stuff (although it is Philly, so some is unavoidable.). I promised MamaGoof that I wouldn't take them to Paddy's Pub.  Plus it was a chance for the little Goofs to spend some time with their beloved cousins and aunt and uncle.

GoofGirl was thrilled by this little excursion, since it would involve staying at a hotel where we would acquire yet more toiletries.  Her odd little hobby is becoming a bit of an obsession.

GoofBoy wasn't as certain, but a road trip meant we would get closer to finishing Watership Down.

It is a short trip, just an overnight.  So we agreed day one would by the Franklin Institute and day two (tomorrow) would be the history stuff.

So a few things to know about the Franklin Institute.  First it is pretty awesome, second children are required to walk through the giant heart and stand at the top (it's a ventricle or an oracle or a treacle or something) and wave while their parent/grandparent/guardian/probation officer takes their picture.  Seriously, you will not be allowed to leave if you don't do this.  You might not be allowed to leave anyway - we had a lot of trouble getting around and out of the building.  I had this experience once before, at the CircusCircus Casino in Vegas in which the rooms are all designed in non-standard geometric shapes.  In fairness, I was drunk at CircusCircus - although at the Franklin Institute I may have been drunk on science.  The parking lot is also confusing, it was apparently built long before cars.

But don't let any of my snide comments keep you from going - we loved it and even bought an annual membership.  For us the highlights were the Titanic exhibit which contains artifacts recovered from the shipwreck - including, and this simply blew GoofGirl's mind - turn of the century toiletries.  Her little mind boggled at the possibilities.

We also liked a show in the Planetarium about black holes.  It was huge frightening and a tough reminder of just how tiny we are in the unimaginably vast cosmos.  It was also narrated by Lliam Neeson, who "took us to the dark side" of modern physics.

As always, we finished at the gift shop, which often bests the museum.  The little Goofs always want rocks.  Surprisingly they didn't want the Ben Franklin action figure.  Philly is a strange town, but it's growing on me.

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