Friday, March 19, 2010

Weekend Update: Butterflies, Parade, and a birthday party!!!!! (part 1)

Mot and I were able to drive down to St. Louis to visit my aunt and uncle last weekend. I had one last vacation day for the year burning a hole in my pocket...and he happened to have the full weekend off. The sun, moon, and stars were aligned, so we took advantage of it!

We headed down Thursday night after I got home from work. I hadn't packed Mot got the animals ready, while I packed up some clothes and camera gear.

The stereo in my car was on it's last leg.....and we decided we couldn't have our road trip car without tunes, for the 6+ hour drive. Mot had a new one put in that afternoon...and we spent the drive to Kansas City messing around with the settings (yep, we left the owners manual at home...who know a car stereo required a masters degree in engineering and computer programming?)

The next morning we woke up, hit Waffle House for breakfast (can't turn up the opportunity, we don't have them in our neck of the woods), then headed out for the second half of the drive.

We arrived in St. Louis around lunch time....and spent the remaining day hanging out with Kent and Linda (Linda is my dad's sister).

We hadn't seen them since the trips to New Mexico last summer to see my it was awesome to get to hang out with them!!!!

Saturday morning the four of us got up, made breakfast, grabbed the camera gear, and headed to the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House, for March Morphos Madness. :-)

As we walked into the actual butterfly exit room.....any stresses, pressures, and worries disappeared completely. The MINUTE you walk in, you are surrounded by the creatures. This month's butterfly of the month is the Morphos butterfly....and everywhere you looked there were large blue butterflies.


After you walked around a while, you also started noticing the other species as well.

Defying gravity.

A little in-flight action.

Nej "Man, those butterflies are beating the crap out of each other."

Mot "Honey, I don't think that's what's going on."

Nej "oooohhhhh (giggle)"

Love the camouflage!!!

Unfortunately, this poor thing was dead. Their life span, after hatching (?), is only 3 weeks or so.

I was sitting on a rock wall...watching the little bugs flying around my head. (Yes, yes...butterflies are bugs to me. Pretty bugs, but still bugs. The scientific community who might be reading this are cringing...I know, I'm sorry!)

Anyway....this guy from the camera club walks up to me.....and says "Shhhhh....donnnnn't moooovvvvvve."

I couldn't help but picture Elmer Fudd (be vewy, vewy quiet..I'm huntin' wabbits), and worked hard to suppress a giggle or two.

Anyway, he leans over strap flapping me in the face (whilst I'm gaining intimate knowledge of his armpit) trying to sneak up on this poor, dead, butterfly who's final descent happened to land him on the same rock wall I was sitting.

I didn't have the heart to tell the guy it was dead. He was working so hard to not disturb it. :-)

The color inside the building was amazing! Between the butterflies, and the plant was beautiful!!!

There's no way you can walk into that building mad, upset, or depressed...and stay down. It was enchanting and magical!!!

(to be cont.)


MJenks said...

Are the Waffle Houses where you are...or visited...or whatever...are they caked in kitchen grease and cigarette smoke, too?

We have a nice butterfly house at the museum here in town. It's kind of stressful, though, because there's all these signs about not letting the butterflies out and all that. There are even signs about stealing butterflies and being prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

So, at least in Durham, NC, leaving the butterfly house isn't a stress-free endeavor.

Nej said...

@ mjenks - Going INTO the butterfly house was a little get the "don't step on them, they like to drink water off the ground" speech. I spent the whole time terrified I was going to crush one. :-)

Leaving was ok go into this little room...and they check to make sure there aren't any "stowaways" on your back or shoulders. No threatening signs...that I noticed.

Brook said...

NO WAFFLEHOUSE!!!!! Wow. There is a butterfly "house" close to my mom but it is outrageously expensive. They had signs but the biggest fun were the blowers you walked through on the way out.
Pretty pictures as usual(I can't find my camera again).

Nej said...

@ Brook - Thanks!!!

Nope, no Waffle Houses around here. Probably a good thing...we'd be there all the time. Did you know that to own one, you have to be an employee...starting at the very, very bottom? You can't just go out and buy a franchise.

It's actually a pretty smart thing, if you think about it. Someone in our area needs to go down and work at one, so they can spread the Wafflehouse love in Nebraska. :-)

I know you can get a season pass at this particular house, but not sure on the price. Our zoo has a really nice one (so I've heard), for the first time since I stopped working there 8 years ago, I may actually have to purchase a pass.