Today I got up early and drove into Dallas to the Dallas Arboretum. The arboretum sits attractively within sight of White Rock Lake. My wife had announced she was sleeping in and then seeking both manicure and pedicure,so I was a free agent.
When I first arrived at the garden, the garden had not yet opened. Attractive twenty and thirtysomethings passed by me, each bearing a foldable mat, heading on in anyway. It developed they were there in droves for morning yoga classes in the indoor exhibition hall. Once I paused from the lotus to see the gift shop of lotus and through a large window saw people in a kind of standing lotus.
Because the temperature was 45 degrees F. when I arrived, I largely had the garden walk business to myself. This year's Fall garden featured some 20,000 chrysanthemums. It was interesting seeing so many mums standing silent vigil over the landscape.
My simple digital did not really capture the scene, so I altered some of the the things it did capture somewhat to catch the mood:
The feel of the colors was a quiet, swirly autumnal glow.
Pumpkins and flowers shared garden space.
I liked the boldness of the shrimp plants.
We were adrift in a sea of mums.
At the garden, I bought a 2 dollar and fifty cent teleioscope, which magnifies and kaleido-izes mages at hand. I watched the filmstrip about the garden, puzzled for a moment in thought about the limber joy of yoga practitioners, and then drove to Fair Park.
Fair Park serves as the Texas state fairgrounds each year, after which it serves the rest of the year as a quiet place of small museums. I went to the Fair Park Aquarium, which is a small aquarium in an old 1930s deco building featuring wall decorations of unicorn sea horses. This aquarium needs updating, and has had a hard time with accreditation type issues, but I've loved it since I first visited it, and love it still. I would like to run an aquarium on just this scale--small tanks of interesting fish, patiently and simply displayed. I took a picture of a pacu, but the pacu was too close for lens comfort, as it turned out.
I went next to the Science Place, where they had a demonstration theremin I enjoyed playing, finding that, sure enough, it was easy to use to generate tones but hard to play--rather like its nemesis, the slide whistle. I liked the various displays of light and laser. I love cool science of the Mr. Wizard variety. I fantasize lately about being a secondary school science teacher and chess coach.
I bought a ticket to the planetarium show "secrets of the sun", and I found myself the only patron in a small but attractive planetarium. Sadly, the program "glitched", and they had to give me my money back. I love star shows. I think the creation of planetarium shows is such a cool craft. I got my four dollars back and remain free of solar secrets.
I was puzzled by the allosaur outside the Science Place. It is now the vogue to try to make dinosaur sculpures a bit "living and breathing", which I support, but this fellow looked as if he were doing a karaoke version of a lesser Donna Summer song. Terrible thunder lizards indeed.
I stopped in the Vietnamese store part of Garland for pho at Cao Bo, which was very good, and then I made my way back north.