Friday, December 14, 2007

Oregon Coast Aquarium

Tuesday Josh and I had to go to a sales presentation so we'd buy into this package. We walked in the door and our dude started talking and didn't stop for 45 minutes, finally he paused to see how many points we wanted to buy and we told him zero. I have to say I was impressed that he let us go so easily, but as soon as we said no, he let us off the hook. That was nice. In his 45 minute speech though he said that on Monday he loved to sit in his office and look at the whales. He said he saw a bunch of them from his office window. Man, we headed the wrong direction on our excursion! Oh well, we still had fun.

On our last day, we really wanted to go to Oregon Coast Aquarium. That was REALLY cool. When I think of an aquarium, that's not what I picture. I think of a bunch of fish in a tank. But this was AWESOME. It's a zoo, for ocean wildlife. They showed us all kinds of creatures. And tons of exhibits. It was amazing. If you're ever in the area, I HIGHLY recommend this place. I saw and learned so much! Did you know that skates (they look like a sting ray) lay egg pouches? We saw one, and it's like a little UPS package with live babies in it. So there were 3 tiny skates inside this little (maybe 6 inches long by 4 inches high) pouch and they live there for like a year before the grow up and "hatch" out of their paper sack looking egg pouch. We saw jellyfish, sharks, halibut (our dinner the night before) anemones, starfish, sea lions, octopus, diving birds, crabs, lobster, shrimp, anchovies, and yes another gift shop. :)

The greatest part about going somewhere during low travel time is that you never wait for anything. We walked through this place and every staff member/volunteer was excited to tell us everything they knew about everything. Since everything was so quiet, we got a lot of personal attention and details of stuff we wouldn't have otherwise found. I was amazed at how much everybody there knew, and how quickly and easily they answered our questions. "Sea lions eat 1/4 of their weight every day - that's like a 120 pound woman eating 30 big macs a day." "If you touch a sea anemone like'll feel your hand stick in. If you were a tiny fish, you would've been dead and moving toward it's mouth." "This type of bird can dive down to 120 feet to prey on their food." "A sea cucumber's only defense is to spit out its guts. If they're being attacked, they will spit out their intestines and leave them behind for the predator to eat and just grow new ones." "Skates lay egg pouches like this." "That keychain is $1.50." These people answered every question we had, and then some more. It was COOL. They even had a petting zoo (that's my term, not theirs) and we got to touch starfish, sea cucumbers, pointy things, anemones, and other stuff. That was pretty rad for my childish brain.

There is a display there called "passages of the deep" where you walk through a huge aquarium. There's just a big tunnel and you can see the fish swimming all around you. The tunnel is made out of glass except for parts of the floor you can see everything around you. They have sections of how deep the water is and what fish you would see. So you start with the boring stuff, small fish, then move to the rock fish (which don't have to swim to stay sunk, they have a built in equalizer so they just stop and stay put), then you get to see the sharks and stink ray, and skates, and big scary fish. It was incredible.

After our long visit to the aquarium, we headed to the "undersea gardens" place. Only it was closed. Everything there just closes when they feel like it. Nobody has hours posted on their doors, they just open if/when they want and leave when they want. We asked a few shop owners when they'd be open so we could go back for more stuff and they said "I don't know, I think I'll leave around 4:00 today". Anyway, the other places we wanted to see were closed, so we looked at some lazy sea lions and shopped some more.

MF decided that she wanted to get a kite. So we went to the kite shop, which she says was her favorite store we went to the whole time. They had wind chimes and kites and flags and all kinds of cool stuff. Josh and I found "the hoodie" and one of those ring Frisbee things that Josh wants. He also wanted a cool kite, a really sturdy one that you fly with 2 hands and stuff. But they were expensive and we decided against it. We got a bunch more souvenirs and headed back home again.

1 comment:

  1. so i didnt know you were coming to oregon!! i hadnt checked your blog in a few days and once i did today i realized that you were up in oregon! silly girl you should have told me! we could have drove down to see you guys and you could have met Kason!


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