Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Hot hot hot

Great googly moogly, it's a scorcher today! And tomorrow, when our folks come over for a cookout? Supposed to be even hotter. Our thermometer read 91° this afternoon, but I'm guessing the heat index was close to 100°. We hope it will be pleasant sitting out on the deck tomorrow, under the umbrella, but if not, we have the air conditioner up from the basement, ready to go to work. I don't want anyone to feel uncomfortable, and it sounds like it will be pretty steamy tomorrow. Good to have the option of sitting inside if it gets too bad.

Knowing how warm it's supposed to get tomorrow, I'm working on getting everything ready today. I don't want to have to fire up the oven or the stove tomorrow, so the potato salad is done (I'll give you the verdict tomorrow...I've already asked Ken if he's going to ask everyone if his wife's potato salad is the best they've ever had!) and chillin', and the beans are ready to bake later tonight and warmed up in the microwave tomorrow. The place isn't spic and span, but I don't think anyone will be mad at me for not doing a bunch of cleaning. Mom was even a little dismayed that I was cooking with it this hot. I'm cool with it (so to speak), and I just hope everything turns out okay!

I got all my Detroit pictures edited this morning! Yay! At least the ones that are good. Here are a few. (Click on any picture to embiggen.)

Girls Gone Wild On the way up to Michigan, we saw lots of wildlife, including deer, turkeys, a hawk, and a black and white raptor--I'm guessing it was an osprey. At a rest stop in Indiana, we saw wildlife of another kind, although we only saw their mode of transport, not the actual wildlife. Ha!

We stayed in Dearborn, just outside of Detroit. Our hotel was not too far from Ford corporate headquarters, and I think Blacky (Ken's Mustang convertible) was pretty happy to be back on his old stomping grounds. The corporate offices are huge, and it makes you realize what a big operation it is. Since I'm a Ford gal, I'm very pleased to know that they are in decent shape and didn't have to take any of the bailout money. They seem to be fairly forward-thinking, so I hope they'll survive. I would be very sad if Ford went under.Ford HQ

After a fun dinner at BD Mongolian Barbecue, we just took it easy in the hotel room, and on Thursday morning, Mark came to meet us at the hotel. We headed out to have breakfast at a place close by, and chatted and got to know each other in real life! Then it was off to the Science Center for the Star Trek exhibit. Our first stop was a flight simulator (see picture below). Do you think the guys running the simulator were happy to be wearing Star Trek uniforms? I'm guessing not. Ken and I went first (only room for two, unfortunately), and even after seeing the onboard video of us, Mark was brave enough to go it alone. It was actually really cool, and although it was modified to show a Trek space battle, apparently the simulator is exactly the same as what fighter pilots use for training. It did barrel rolls, and backwards rolls, and it certainly gave me a whole new appreciation for what pilots go through in their training. Yikes! Anyone with a tender tummy would be well-advised to avoid a flight simulator. It was fun. I think our main reactions were “Whoaaa!” followed by laughter!

Trek flight simulatorThen we made our way to the elevator for the Trek exhibit. (It's extra admission, besides the usual Science Center fee, so you have to show your ticket to get on the elevator.) I'm sorry to say that photography was not allowed in the exhibit itself, because there were some crazy fun exhibits! I've already written about my favorite, the Guardian of Forever, and there was also a cool replica of a Next Gen hallway and Captain Picard's quarters. Lots of costumes from all of the Trek series, and my favorites were of course from the first season. Lots of great prop replicas, including phasers, communicators, and a Tribble. Great trivia and observations about different series and episodes and actors. Did you know that James Doohan (Scotty) served in the Canadian Army and was at Normandy Beach on D-Day? He lost a finger on his right hand, and always hid it during filming. It was also neat to read about the physics of Star Trek, and how accurate or not the concepts were. The cell phone was conceived by someone watching the original series actors using their communicators. Yes, the cell phone exists because of Star Trek. I also envision a future in which the screaming kid we encountered in one room of the exhibit (he was old enough to know better, but his handlers seemed to not care about his behavior) will be automatically silenced by some sort of sound dampening device. There has to be a way.Trek elevator

As Mark and I agreed, Star Trek wasn't always about pure science. Some of the finest science fiction writers ever worked on the Trek series, and sometimes it was just about the story (as in "The City on the Edge of Forever" episode about which I wrote). I love Star Trek because it shows an optimistic future world in which prejudice is set aside in the cause of the greater good. It's about tolerance, compassion, education, science, and our yearning for exploration. Its 40+ year survival shows that it has always spoken to something deep inside many of us, and the success of the most recent movie proves that many still get it. We are fascinated by the thought of finding new worlds and new civilizations; we still want to go where no one has gone before; and we all want to live long and prosper. To those dearest to us, we can honestly say "I have been and always shall be your friend."

Damn if I didn't go and choke myself up. Argh! It's a remarkable show, a remarkable concept, and I am very proud to say that I am a huge fan of Star Trek. Call me a geek if you will...I don't care.

We also got to see the new movie on the IMAX screen there, and I was thrilled! It was fun to see Mark's reaction, since he hadn't seen the movie yet. Afterwards, he said what I've heard from so many--the casting was incredible. They really did do a great job, and I think the franchise just might be a phoenix rising. (That one was for you, Mark!)

After the exhibit, we enjoyed an excellent dinner at Mark's favorite Mexican restaurant, Xochi's. (That is its nickname--I can't recall the full name.) It made me want to explore some of the local restaurants here and find something a little more authentic than Hacienda. I'm thinking that we probably have some very good Mexican restaurants in our area, and we just haven't found them yet. Anyone reading from our area who can recommend a place?

More tomorrow!

16 comments:

  1. I'm not familiar with the restaurant, but I'm guessing that's short for Xochimilco. Sounds like you had a great trip, and I'm enjoying the photos. Have a COOL time at tomorrow's cook-out!

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  2. My temperatures have yours beat by quite a bit. Pity me, won't you?

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  3. We are fascinated by the thought of finding new worlds and new civilizations; we still want to go where no one has gone before; and we all want to live long and prosper. To those dearest to us, we can honestly say "I have been and always shall be your friend."


    I really like this part. A whole lot. It is something that has always moved me, to wish people a full and prosperous exprience, and to always have a 'light on for them' in my heart.

    Hopefully, I can get the SFC to fly out there ... my Best Sis is in Chi town, and that would be a good excuse to get out there ..

    Now, I AM getting emotional!

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  4. Our forecasted high tomorrow is 99- that's in the shade, people! We pretty much know it's going to be over 100 degrees every day this time of year!
    Hope everyone stays cool and enjoys the picnic!

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  5. Hi Beth,
    I'm keeping my fingers crossed for your Potato Salad. On the other hand, if it doesn't quite work out or gets sort of melty in all that heat, there's always Plan B: Send it as a peace offering to that no good %$@#@ ex-in law who was nice enough to "forgive" you ...
    Best,
    Marty

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  6. IMEX is awesome.....Thankful we were a tad cooler this week. Ugh, but July 4th is usually a scorcher here.

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  7. Great googly moogly ..? Next thing you know, either someone will be calling Elizabeth, or there will be a complaint about a 'big dummy'!

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  8. I'm beginning to think every town has a pseudo-Mexican restaurant called the Hacienda!

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  9. we owned one Ford and the thing started 3 days a week. The other 4 days we had to walk. We took it to certified mechanics and no one ever nailed down the culprit. We sold it. Rick does not like Fords. Me? I just want a running vehicle. I used my friends Ford Focus this past winter (remember?) and i LOVED LOVED LOVED it!
    Do not throw anything at me but i have never gotten into Star Trek. The only one i ever really watched was the series with Whoopi. I like reading about how much you enjoy it though...you really bring it alive for others. Love your pics. So glad you got to go and enjoy your trip!

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  10. Beth your enthusiasm just boils over. I love reading your blog. I just wanted to mention that the award I passed on is from the gentelman bowing is from Germany and now lives in Greece, He comes up with some deep stuff. Lucy

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  11. The pics are cool, I've been itching to go the Star Trek exhibit badly, even more so now..gaah..lol

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  12. amish sound dampening device = hand firmly clamped over the mouth--careful, don't cover the nose too!

    again glad y'all had fun. it's like 92 here now and hit 95 in my classroom (yeah folks, that's inside on the north side of the building on the first floor) at 12:30 when i checked out for the afternoon. loved the pics and if you give that assweasel the potato salad, make sure you let it sit out a bit first so the fucker gets a touch of the old e-coli.

    xxalainaxx

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  13. I've watched Star Trek from the beginning :) Didn't realize till I was much older how much of a Male Chauvinist that William Shatner was in that time LOLOL. Think about it, he was...the cute little blondie always to his side. Sheesh.
    Picard was my FAVORITE captain out of all of them. I really like Deep Space Nine also. Babylon 5...all of them.
    Oh talking about the heat???? it got to a feel like of over 110* here today... a temperature thingie on the way home said it was 103* ~
    Hugggggzzzz** Teresa

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  14. That's so cool, that you got to go to this.... I just KNEW Mark wouldn't let you post a pic of him!!! LOL!!!! Mysterious!!! Glad you all had such a good time!!!

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  15. Damn, I am green with envy... what a fun trip.. and to see the "Star Trek Experience..."

    whoa!!

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I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you?