My parents have been in-state all this week, so I've been spending most of my time with them. Tuesday we went down to Old Town ABQ; my mom likes browsing through the shops there. Found a newly-hatched black widow brood in front of one of the stores. The owners will have their hands full in a short while. They wanted to go to Nob Hill as well, but by then everything was closed; I knew about the strange six o'clock NM phenomenon, but they did not. That evening, the parental units got to meet Toulouse and Farid for the first time; they also got to see my pepper plants.
Wednesday we went up to the ABQ Art and History Museum; it was actually quite fun. I learned a surprising amount, and I didn't expect to see authentic 15th-century weapons and armor. It would have been much more entertaining if parents there weren't afraid to keep their children under control. Seriously, all the exhibits have a rather legible sign reading "Do not touch"; when your kid is trying to open an antique chest-of-drawers or ring an 18th-century train bell, smack them! At least one parent had the guts to stop their child from "petting" a wooden sculpture.
Thursday was probably my favorite; having spent the night in my parents' hotel room (on a shitty fold-out bed that was falling apart), we drove up to Los Alamos. The maternal unit wished to travel along the Turquoise Trail to Santa Fe as something of a scenic route, which was actually kinda neat (especially when we encountered the petrified forest between Madrid and Santa Fe). Once there, we went to the Bradbury Science Museum first. It's not a bad museum, but it's really oriented poorly; most of it seems to be walls of text, which is okay for someone like me but really bad for most others, especially children. There were a few child-oriented bits, but they were clearly meant to be largely for young children. While I thoroughly enjoyed myself reading about the science behind the Bomb(s), my mother was thoroughly overwhelmed.
While we were there, it began raining; the storm that stretched across the entire northern half of the state had hit. We ended up spending our time waiting for it to abate in the museum's gift shop, where I actually picked up a copy of Pocket Ref, 3rd. Ed.
Once the rain had died down enough that it was no longer hailing, we went up to the Black Hole. I did not expect to find a few of the things I encountered there: apparently LANL had recently decommissioned an old NeXT system, as well as a few other older machines I recognized the parts from. While I never did find the NeXT machine itself (I'm pretty sure it was either already bought or hidden), I did encounter its monitor and 400dpi printer, the latter of which I purchased. There was also an SGI monitor I considered getting, as well as an old TRS-80 keyboard unit. I'd love to get up there again soon; we had to leave early, as my folks were getting hungry and, again, my mother was overwhelmed (this time it was the sheer amount of stuff there).
Upon returning to Socorro, it was still light out; my dad really wanted to check out the '72 beetle my sister purchased to see if it would start and to take pictures for her. We found out upon arrival that the battery in it was almost brand new; alas, the gasoline in it most definitely was not. However, we're pretty sure it will start right up with new gas. This makes me quite hopeful for mine; alas, mine will require a battery and a little more work to get it going. Not much more, though.
Had a dream last night; I do not recall the context, but someone I knew had challenged me to a spar with bladed weapons. He was using a pair of daggers, while I was using something like a Niuweidao (I had intended to grab my kukri, but went along with this anyway) with a minor blade in my other hand for guarding (I may have inadvertently invented this knife in my dream, as it would be pretty useless for most anything but serious blocking [EDIT: After a brief Wikipedo browsing session, it appears the blade I had was most similar to the modern Karambit]). After a very long and rather arduous skirmish, I ended up landing the first what would have been fatal blow had this not been an exercise. It was a lot of fun, really.This entry was originally posted at http://baphijmm.dreamwidth.org/510096.html. Please comment there using OpenID.