It is Mr. Cleaver and I's longstanding tradition to get outta dodge at least once in midwinter - usually late January/early February. It's been overnight trips to Boothbay and Lake Geneva, or as simple as a day trip to FunSpot. This year we returned to a place we've played hooky in a few times before: Boston.
This year's excursion was specifically inspired by the current special exhibit running at the Museum of Science, A Day in Pompeii (still around until Feb 12th - if you're interested).
I'm a bit of an ancient history geek, having minored in Classical Studies in college, and while my Latin is sadly a bit rusty these days my love of classical art and history hasn't diminished.
The Pompeii exhibit was very well done and if I were to describe it in a single word, it would be "striking."
The preserved artifacts are incredibly well preserved and cover a wide range of items from the sophisticated plumbing pipes and fixtures to intricate statues to wonderfully bright colored frescoes.
Of course the most striking of all are the body casts, which are really a punch to the gut that bring home the tragedy in an all too effective way. I was most shaken of all by the two chained figures - one a man and one a dog, that had no way of escaping the volcano.
We spent a little over an hour in the Pompeii exhibit before enjoying the rest of museum, including a collection of Geckos and a fun exhibit on model-making, which included making your own fish and seeing how long they survive in the environment (Mr. Cleaver's far out-survived mine.)
The other museum highlight for me what a photo exhibit called "What I Eat: Around the World in 25 Diets." The exhibit featured a series of portraits of people from various countries and that day's food intake, along with a calorie count - which raised some interesting connections, such as the model, cod-fisherman, and refugee who all had similar calorie intakes, though wildly different food choices.
It certainly made not want to think about the bacon and onion ring-covered burger I had for lunch (Yes, there's a burger under there, it's from the 21st Amendment and it was delicious, one the best burgers I'd ever had).
All in all, it was a fun trip, well worth the pre-sunrise train ride down.