Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Exiled from Our Own Home

Exiled from our own home? Well, yeah, at least for the afternoon. We need to stay out of the way while our real estate agents show the place, host open houses and such. This weekend we decided to spend some quality family time together up in Bal'mor. Sorry, I mean Baltimore.

My wife and I used to go up to the Inner Harbor and Little Italy quite regularly when we were dating, but we had never taken the kids. So, we decided that would be our destination. We planned to visit the National Aquarium, which of course was packed, it being a holiday weekend and all.

While I stood in line and fried my scalp (you know, my wife reminded me to bring the sunscreen but somehow I still forgot it) to get tickets while my wife and the kids hit some of the maritime sites along the pier (specifically the USS Torsk and the Lightship Chesapeake). Luckily for me, and my receding hairline, the aquarium ticket line moved fairly fast and I was able to join the rest of the family on the anchored museums.

We still had some time to kill (the aquarium uses a timed entry system on busy days) and the kids were hot and tired, so we plopped ourselves down in the much cooler shadow of the Baltimore World Trade Center (which is right next to the aquarium) and had ourselves a summertime treat from one of the ice cream vendors as we watched some of the boats in the harbor.

After our refreshing break, we headed over to the aquarium to see what we could see. The big open tank of rays just inside the entrance was quite cool (though that may have just been the air conditioning I was feeling), but mostly my wife and I were entertained by the kids' gasps and shouts of glee whenever they saw a new type of fish (which was pretty much every 10 feet or so). One fish that made them quite excited was a "Nemo" fish (otherwise known as a clown fish) darting in and out of an anemone. Other favorites were, of course, the dolphins and sharks.

Hey, if you need to stay out the house for the day, Baltimore's Inner Harbor is just fine as a diversion for the 5 and under crowd. Anybody have suggestions as to where we should go this coming weekend when we get exiled once again?

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