Jon's Uncle Paul called early in the morning when I was still very much asleep (as were our overnight guests) to ask if we were available to hang out. I was very confused as to who this Paul guy was at first, until I remembered that Jon was supposed to go to an Indian's game that evening with his uncle from California. I came to and agreed to meet at the Great Lakes Science Center with all the kids.
The boys rarely get to see Jon's side of the family because they all live far away, but they do check our blog, I hear. They should leave comments to make their presence known, ahem... Paul helped Aleks look through a microscope.While Bastian, who came in full pirate garb, looked on.
Bastian operates a mechanical arm. It's part of this special technology where they wire artificial limbs directly to the brain so that people can control the movement similar to how they would if they had a real limb. It's far less effective, of course, but amazing nonetheless. The only thing sort of creepy about this exhibit is that the robotic arm was child-sized, which I didn't necessarily want the kids confronting. Understanding that children all over the world lose limbs and that a select few privileged ones here in the Western World have the opportunity to replace them with these fancy-pants high tech gadgets that still fall woefully short of a real limb was not exactly my goal for the day.
On a rooftop balcony, there was all sorts of water play, including big boats with slides and bubble mazes in the steering column. Bastian fit right in. Some other kids asked where he got his costume. I think they thought it was part of the exhibit.
He filled buckets with fish on this balancing game. Then he swabbed the decks.
Aleks and Jon ran off somewhere while Bastian threw his costume aside and became enamored with the polymer room. There were about five bagillion kids in there all getting yelled at by the ladies who run the place to not climb the walls or use the balls as weapons. There was a big pully system and this vacuum tube which shot balls into the air to land in a big plastic container above.
Periodically, a child would pull a lever that opened the container, releasing all the balls onto their dear little heads. They'd all squeal and giggle.
I hate ball pits though. They smell pukey. Ew.
We rejoined the others and the littles spent time chasing seagulls outside while Paul and the big kids went upstairs again.
The harbor pooled all the nastiness floating in the lake. Perhaps much grosser than the ball pit.
Bastian watched these tiny little one-person sailboats and a bit sailboat too.The Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame is right next store. It's shaped really weird.
Bastian spies a gull.
And jumps at it!
Back upstairs, Aleks did the weather report, mostly spending the time making faces and acting super goofy.
Just before leaving, we participated in a demonstration wherein you touch this giant metal rod and conduct electricity, seen in the floating pom pom strands. Aleks ruined the whole thing by letting go. The lady got mad. It was weird and unnecessary. Luckily, he's so brilliantly confident he didn't even notice.
Back by the lake, Paul carried both boys! I thought this was so amazing I had to document it.
Here's all the guys. Jon's even smiling for a change.
Aleks belched or something and thought it was way hilarious. He looks so cute in this picture.
Bastian scaled the railing and tried to swim for Canada. He didn't quite make it to the water before Jon retrieved him.
On the way home, Paul, Sharon, Johnny, and uh, the neighbor kid, followed us back to our house to check directions before the game. We took them all along The Shoreway, through Rockefeller Park, past Case, the Gehry building, CIA, Hessler Rd, and through Little Italy. They had the very scenic tour of Cleveland.
The big boys thought Aleks' Lego were awesome. They were thoroughly impressed at the sheer amount of Lego, all stored on my lovingly handcrafted Lego Tray (have I mentioned my Lego Tray before? I don't think so, there's no way). Soon enough, however, the big boys left with Papa and Paul and Sharon to go to the baseball game, leaving the littles and I who ate pizza and watched movies, which was a good distraction.