Several years ago, Alfred got me a very sweet Christmas present: 2 passes to the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. Dorian and I hadn’t used them because we’d only been able to go to the Cal Academy at night, for its Thursday night Night Life program, which has different tickets. So, I thought it’d be fabulous to finally use them with Munchkinhead.
We set out on BART, transferred to Muni and walked into Golden Gate Park where the Cal Academy is. As we approached the building, we pulled out the tickets, still carefully wrapped in their plastic sleeve. It wasn’t until we opened them that I learned they weren’t heavy-duty tickets mailed from the Academy but a single sheet of paper with the tickets printed out, carefully folded to show only the tickets. Alfred’s printer is so good, I couldn’t even tell they were home printed. At the bottom of the page was fine print. The tickets were only good for a year.
Munchkinhead and I went to the ticket window. The lady there was super nice and went to talk to her manager. She allowed us to still use the tickets, we just had to pay the difference in admission price from when the tickets were purchased and the current price. We were very happy. If we’d had to pay full admission price, we probably wouldn’t have gone; they’re $30 each!
We had lots of fun at the Academy, dodging little grade schoolers and squinching up our noses when their screeching voices hurt our ears. We saw live penguins in the African Hall, stuffed zebra, a Lucy skeleton copy and lots of taxidermed antelope of various kinds.
We explored the four-story rainforest with its beautiful butterflies, the aquarium and the living roof . Here we are on the living roof in our matching dresses – we just happened to both pick out the same vintage pattern at different points, so we have similar dresses – and our matching shoes – we bought those together last time Munchkinhead came to visit.
But my favorite two parts of the Academy were the stuffed giraffes and the walrus statue thingy. I love giraffes. I think they’re my favorite animal. The Academy has a baby giraffe that is shorter than me! Or would be, if we were allowed to stand on the same platform.
The walrus statue, or whatever it is – it’s some sort of wall decoration thing that reminds me of Venice, except Venice doesn’t have walruses on its canal decorations – the walrus thing sent us scrambling through our respective bags for appropriate tusk-like items. Munchkinhead’s knitting needles would have been perfect, except for that whole having yarn and a knitted swatch on them issue. But we found something almost as good and took a picture specially for Mommy.
“Look, Mutti!” says Munchikinhead, “I am the walrus.”
After the Academy, we took Muni to downtown San Francisco, where we had lunch at a SF classic, Katana-ya. Mr. Trizzle recommended it as a quintessential San Francisco must. Neither of us got the fried chicken raman, but it was still a good lunch.
Then we did a small bit of shopping, picking up matching free, or near-free, garments from Vickie’s and a few blouses from H&M. We skipped the three-floor shoe store because, as Munchkinhead put it best, “that sounds dangerous.”
Tomorrow, we’re hitting up Albany.