Monday, September 14, 2009


Last week Meg and Henry and I went on vacation. We rented a small house on Cape Cod and were there for four nights. We had a really good time, especially because for most of our time their Henry slept great. We got to the beach five times. Henry did really well there. He was initially a bit scared of the waves (they weren't big most days), but then got really into the experience and had a great time running about at the waters edge and checking out the shells and rocks. Meg had fun spinning him in the air a bit, in and out of the water. We only ate out once, but we enjoyed some good meals at the cabin, including one when we got lobsters to cook up. (Henry was put to bed before we enjoyed that meal.)

Our car was completely stuffed. Henry had to sit between two piles. He amused himself on the way down by taking a few items out of their bags.

After dinner out Henry wanted to see the ocean again even though he didn't have his swimsuit on. Most of the above pictures/video are of that experience. He sure likes slippery rocks!

Henry liked this chair a lot in our cottage. Several times he grabbed my hand as if to lead me to something he wanted me to see only to get me out of the chair so he could use it himself.

Henry at the Zooquarium.

Henry at the Children's Museum.

Henry playing with our lobsters.

I completed reading one book while we were gone, Humboldt's Cosmos: Alexander von Humboldt and the Epic Journey of Discovery that Changed the Way We See the World, by Gerard Helferich. Alexander Humboldt (1769-1859) was born in Berlin. He was an academic and from an early age sought to explore the world. He tried to join many expeditions, but eventually sponsored his own expedition of two (he and a friend, perhaps lover) to South and Central America. His journey lasted about four years. During that time he traveled down insect infested swamps, climbed numerous mountains and inspected mining operations in Mexico. Upon returning to Europe he wrote numerous books and was quite influential in the study of climates, plants, volcanoes and American cultures. I enjoyed the book and learning about Humboldt. The book quoted Humboldt's narrative a lot (which I like in such a book). Humboldt has a great way of describing things and is oddly very personal in his description of what he sees, but not so in his description his traveling companions. It's hard for one to get a sense of his partner, Bopland. My only complaint about the author is that it seemed to me like he depended too much on Humbodlt's descriptions of the environment rather than his own, modern experiences. Most similar works I've read lately do a good job at expanding upon older source material with more recent observations of the environment. I didn't get the sense that the author had been to many of the places himself. I'll have to read another biography of Humboldt in the future. It be good to compare another to this one.

The one bit of coin searching I did last week didn't go so hot.

Three large dollars didn't have anything.

8,000 halves turned up just two 90% silver halves (2 x 1964), fourteen 40% silver halves (2 x 1965, 2 x 1966, 5 x 1967, 3 x 1968D, 2 x 1969D), one proof (1971S), eight mint set halves (2005P, 2 x 2005D, 2 x 2006P, 3 x 2006D) and one US quarter.

Found: 10 pennies (1 at the beach, 1 at Shaw's, 1 at Stop & Shop, 7 at the cottage), 2 quarters (1 at Stop & Shop, 1 at the cottage)