Relishing in Moments Past and Present (8-30 September)

My friend’s cute little “cactus house” — and, yes, sadly the one on the far right is dead.

Some beauties from the glass flowers exhibit. Yes, those ARE made of GLASS. Crazy, right?! Crazy awesome!

Thursday, 17 Sep
Have you ever gone somewhere and saw something you noted in your head to “come back to later” because you were too busy at that time? I do that ALL the time. I’ve done that for several places in Dublin while I was studying abroad there for a year, and again here in Boston. The funny thing is, most of the time I never wind up going back to that location because it wasn’t convenient and I didn’t make a set goal to go to that certain place. And so, I usually just put it on my checklist of things to never be thought of again.

However, this time around, I got lucky. I just happened to be on one of my rare trips to main campus/the Cambridge campus today. I knew I had extra time after my meeting there around lunch time and had taken the rest of the day off of work. Today’s adventure: The Harvard Museum of Natural History.

I know, I know what you’re thinking. Me? The person who can’t stand wandering around anything with the name “museum” in it? Me? The person who will avoid going to museums in general? Why was I interested in such an exploration? Ah, now that’s the fun part. The majority of “natural history museums” composes of a lot of animal — okay, and insects, arthropods, etc etc — things: fossils, taxidermy, glass jars of preserved oddities. Not my thing, but the Harvard Museum of Natural History is different. They have a glass flowers exhibit.

What’s a glass flower exhibit? I’m glad you asked. This exhibit houses a collection of flower composed of glass made by glass artisans in the 1880s over a period of 5 years. The collection comprises of full-sized flowers AND “microscopic” views of the flower architecture. They’re mounted on sheets of paper almost as if they were herbarium specimens, except the glass flowers are of a 3-dimensional shape, rather the the typical flattened and dried herbaria specimen.

I stayed there for two hours — only because I realised I had to go home and eat, otherwise I would’ve stayed there for 5 just oo-ing and ah-ing over EVERY piece.

Saturday, 19 Sep

It’s been a while since I’ve seen my longest-standing guy friend. We met almost 10 years ago online. The first time we met in person, he drove a fairly new Toyota Camry, Delilah (yes, named after the song), to meet me. Now, years later, he’s still one of my closest friends and he’s at last selling the car. It’s hard to believe it’s been so long since we first met. Things haven’t changed between us much, that’s for sure, but we sure have changed as individuals. Years fly by, even if the days crawl by ever so slowly. Farewell, Delilah.

This AWESOME hops coaster we saw at the Five Horses Tavern. Our waitress was nice enough to hunt down some fresh ones for us to keep, even though they were from the night before.

Monday, 21 Sep

Almost 4 years ago now, I had just recently returned to Southern California after spending a summer doing an internship at Cornell University. I had spent the summer living at a a filthy fraternity house and experienced, for the first — and only– time, what it was like to have a roommate — literally, sharing a bedroom with another person. It’d been a while since I’d seen her in person or even spoken to her. A few weeks ago, she saw that I was in Boston and asked to stay with me, as she was to visit. It turns out, she is out here for research, using Harvard University’s Herbaria. How exciting! Today and tomorrow, she’ll be staying with me. It has been and will be quite an interesting two days.

Some lovely scenes from Primark: (top) the welcome sign at the entrance and (bottom) the nostalgic teals and whites that brighten the space lining even the escalators.

Monday, 28 Sep

So, ever since I moved here, I found out that Primark would be opening in Boston — it’s first US location — in the fall of 2015. Well, it’s been here since the beginning of the month! I hadn’t gotten a chance to go and see it for myself until today. How exciting!!!! It’s everything I dreamed and more! The prices are the same as back in Ireland (other than the change in currency symbols, no conversion rate applied), the colour scheme is the same, the variety and styles are the same — oh! — and they have my favourite beloved home & bath sections! The best part though, is probably the third floor where I can finally find things that probably fit me! How exciting!!!

“Today” I learned

  • Kiwi seeds look like golf balls with the dents on the surface.
  • Bagels are an ethnically Jewish food.
  • Rhode Island has the 2nd largest coastline in proportion to its land mass in the United States. The first largest is Hawai’i, of course.
  • H&M is a Swedish company
  • Primark originated as Penneys in Ireland in 1969, but has since expanded beyond and is now more widely known as Primark. Seems like an Irish thing to have a different name than all the rest of the world (i.e. Bulmers vs. Magners.

Other Pictures 

A lovely scene from the Harvard University Campus.

One of the postdoctoral fellows harvesting hops on our patio for some brewing fun.

My Cornell roomie and I had some mouthwatering, yet simple, noms at the Five Horses Tavern in Somerville, as suggested by one of the graduate students I work with. (That disgusting-looking thing in the middle was the most amazing brussel sprouts dish I’ve had.)

Some falafels I made for an all-women’s get-together.

A lovely scene from an all-ladies night.

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