It is time for the true story of what happened last week.
I, Kikita, would like to apologize for my tardiness in explanation, but (as you can see) I've been rather busy DOING things so WRITING about them is not the highest priority. But I digress . . .
You already have an idea of what Sheila and I were up to because Mami wasn't too far off in her guesstimations.
Yes, we went to the aquarium. Yes, we touched bat rays. We decided to seize whatever moment and opportunity that came up for us. We also touched anything else that they would let us. This included all kinds of star fish, sea anemones, sea snails (soooo slimy!!), and some other kind of shark which felt much rougher than one would anticipate.
I have no idea why there was a "feed the Lorikeets" spot at the aquarium, but they were the most beautiful birds I'd ever seen and I am stoked that one decided to jump on my hand.
I also do not know why there was a bald eagle at the aquarium, but it was so exciting, I had a rush of American pride so we decided a picture with it was a must.
We saw EVERYTHING. The reason there are no photos to document what we saw (which was EVERYTHING) is because there were throngs of people (yes, throngs) AND it was dark and the tanks had glass and it just seemed like it wasn't going to work out.
Besides, we were busy being in awe of the Creator of the Universe. I don't know how anyone can go to an aquarium, see all the different and fascinating life forms that live in the sea and still deny the existence of God (but that's not important right now).
So, we walked and walked and walked. And then, we were starving. Our original plan had been to finish with the aquarium and then do lunch at the museum cafe that I'd heard so much about. (Truth be told, I became fascinated with the museum and eating at the cafe after reading THIS POST.)
But as we left the aquarium, we noticed a line of restuarants nearby that seemed simpler than walking ALL. THE. WAY. to the car and then PARKING again before finding food. So, in keeping with the whole "reef/sea creatures" concept, we ate at Outback because it's supposed to be Australian and I hear they have a big reef there . . .
Remember, the plan for the day was to be adventurous. So we ordered Australian beer, a rack of lamb, and sweet potatoes. So, we DID eat, but we are women and take dessert very seriously, which is why we felt the need to take pictures of the cake.
After luxuriating in the Outback, we finally were prepared for the second leg of our journey. Nothing, though, could have prepared us for BROKEN ELEVATORS in the parking structure, though. SIGH.
We were on the 4th floor. The stairs loomed ahead of us. It was everything we could do to make it to the top.
Despite our best efforts, we made it to the museum about 30 minutes before closing time. The plus side was that we didn't have to pay. The down side was that large portions of the museum were closed. So we instantly agreed that we would come back another day for our lunch and museum plan.
I felt that what we WERE able to see was quite jarring. There were pieces from all over Latin America, but everything was so dark! You could feel the torment and sadness . . .
Speaking of torment and sadness . . . it is now the moment you've been waiting for, The Sheep. Explained.
Obviously, I was deeply moved, which is why I felt the need to take a picture.
So moved, in fact, it was all I could do to not begin to weep audibly because I didn't have to read the description to tell you that the artist was Cuban, or that it was made as a protest.
And then, I DID read the description:
"Ángel Delgado Fuentes is considered one of the leading contemporaryartists of Cuban art living in exile. Through various media, he pursues themes of individual freedom and/or the lack thereof, especially in Cuba. In 1990, the artist was imprisoned in Cuba for six months following an anti-government performance art piece he presented in a Havana gallery. This work of art subtly criticizes the political conditions of contemporary Cuba—the fear of non-conformity, the confrontational few and the idea that freedom is just a trip away. Placed within a black suitcase is a series of small white sheep made of soap, in which several sheep run contrary to the herd."
Suddenly, I swelled with Cuban pride and had to pray for my country.
If ever there was a day that I spent "on the hyphen," this was it. Wholly American and celebrating the Bald Eagle, our symbol of freedom. Then wholly Cuban and weeping for the lack of freedoms my people face on a daily basis.
The places I'll go, indeed.
I wonder how I'll feel at the zoo?