Yesterday, I got to take some family members to the California Academy of Sciences for the first time as a staff member. It was really fun showing them my favorite exhibits and giving them a bit of the insider perspective on the Academy.
It was also the first time I have been to the museum during one of our peak times, a rainy Saturday afternoon when seemingly every family in the Bay Area decided to take their kids to the Academy. The place was just jammed with excited kids of all ages racing around, their guardians trying to both enjoy the museum and not lose their little ones.
There's a lot to learn from just slowly walking through the hallways and eavesdropping on what people are talking about, engaging with, and spending time doing. For many children, their experience is similar to their parents, seeing everything through a 2×4 inch LCD screen, as they took pictures of everything they encountered along the way. I wondered what happens later to those 10s of thousands of images taken every day?
My dad is an avid photographer, so he had a great time shooting all of the colorful and vibrant fish, animals, plants and scenery everywhere.
Since my family is from the Philippines, they took special pleasure in the Philippine Coral Reef exhibits. Seeing people oo'ing and ah'ing sealife from your home country does give you a tiny ping of pleasure and pride, even if you have very distant connection to any of it.
Everyone in our group enjoyed the show at the Morrison Planetarium, "Life: A Cosmic Story." Honestly, I appreciate the show more and more every time I see it. For all the beauty and majesty of the cosmos on display, I don't think anything really wows the audiences more than the opening shot of the redwood forest filling the gigantic curved screen. Simply glorious.
After our visit to the Academy, my sister led us to one of the best views of the city, and the Cal Academy: the tower at the DeYoung Museum just across the plaza from the Academy. You don't even have to pay admission to get up to this gorgeous view of SF. Even on this rainy, overcast day, the sights were just lovely.
Such a fun day with the family at the Academy! My sister texted me later that both she and her boyfriend now want to work there, which made me smile.