Entries from November 2009 ↓

Rain Warning

From Environment Canada:


Metro Vancouver
9:16 PM PST Sunday 15 November 2009
Rainfall warning for
Metro Vancouver continued

Rainfall amounts of 80 to 200 mm through Monday.

Even for Vancouver that’s impressive…200 mm (7.9 inches) of rain!


While in Washington, D.C., I visited several of the Smithsonian museums:  American History, Air and Space, and Natural History.  My favorite is the Natural History museum, and I ended up spending the better part of a day exploring moon rocks, the Hope Diamond, countless weird minerals like stibnite, and fossilized skeletons of T-Rex and Triceratops.  Despite its huge size (325,000 square feet open to the public and 1.5 million square feet in all), it feels slightly cramped like the attic of an eccentric trillionaire collector — an attic that houses over 124 million objects.


These photos are from the Natural History and Air and Space museums.  They are hand-held shots (no tripods allowed) in low light often through glass, so some of them came out better than others.

Washington, D.C.

Some trips stay with you.

Back when I was in high school my dad took me along on a business trip to Washington, D.C.  During the day when he was in meetings I was on my own to explore.  I loved every minute of it.

I visited the Washington Monument which I had written a report about in the first grade, explored the depths of the Library of Congress, read the Constitution at the National Archives, watched a boring bit of Congress in action at the Capitol, toured the Supreme Court and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, walked around the National Mall, visited the Lincoln Memorial, and spent many hours in three of the Smithsonian museums:  American History, Air and Space, and Natural History.

I’ve always wanted to go back, and just recently, I did.

I was surprised how well I remembered everything.  I had printed out some maps, but I didn’t need them.

I stayed at the Sofitel (#1 of 134 in TripAdvisor) which is one block away from the White House and within walking distance to all the major sites.  It’s also one block from a Metro station which goes straight into Reagan National (DCA).  Not cheap but highly recommended.

Highlights of this trip include:

  • Seeing kids thank vets at the WWII memorial.
  • Being at the White House entrance when Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper drove in.
  • Revisiting all the landmarks, especially the Washington Monument (still 555 feet high as I reported in first grade).
  • The Smithsonian Natural History Museum (which deserves and will get its own blog entry).


Snow on the Lions

Woke up to this view out my window:


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