Dino Day.

It's こどもの日 (Kodomo no Hi or Children's Day) here in Japan and what better way to celebrate than talk about a museum that I went to a month ago. Kids love dinosaurs, don' t they?

The Dinosaur expo at the National Museum of Nature and Science is there until June 12th, so go now before they fossilize. The highlight for me the 15 metre-long, スピのサウルス Spinosaurus, that cool creature from JPIII. (Click his name for some facts.)

Of course, a favourite Tyrant is the T-rex who logs in at a mere 12 metres.

Smiling for the camera is, appropriately, the Camarasaurus.

A new genus and species from Chile is the Chilesaurus diegosuarezi. Mmmm. spicy Chilesaurus.

Another recently discovered dude is the Kulindadromeus zabaikalicus. a Russian herbivore. A real cutie with some proto-feathers.

A replica of the dino with the hipster name, Chasmosaurus from Canada.

Some Hadrosauroidae heads. There was an audio reproduction of its aural cavity. Pretty cool.

A raptor (maybe this), a darn big fish and a Ceratopsia (actual names unknown, sorry.)

At the exit, there is a wall full of drawings by kids.

 My personal favourite.

In the adjacent building is a permanent display of an Ark full of animals. Here are a choice few.

Giraffe tongues!

Outside the museum is a whale pondering the meaning of life just as it's about to smash into the pavement.

I bought a postcard and a couple of Gatcha-capsules. I wish I'd bought all four but at 400¥, it was too chancy to keep trying.

I'm really happy to have scored this one, Yi, a dino with bat-like membranous wings.

What did your kids get up to today?


Star Cars.

In honour of "May the Fourth Be With You" Day, I finally got around to photographing some of the Star Wars vehicles I acquired when I was last home. Unfortunately, I didn't get a full set, but I was only there for a short time and hit as many Dollarama stores as I could.

My fave is Yoda and the rest follow in order of my personal preference.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find the Chewbacca mobile yet I did find this one on sale. I refuse to pay 899-999¥ per car, but I will purchase one at half price.

I need to find some kind of hook thingie I can use to hang these up in my room. Or perhaps a mobile mobile.

I have some other cars and SW loot to showcase and will do so another time...


The Kid's Got Spelunk.

I didn't realize that it has been almost ten years since I last went spelunking. The last time was in Abakuma-Dou and it was a blast. A few weeks ago I aided a friend by driving him out to Ichinoseki to pick up a used car. At that time, we drove by Yugen Cave and I vowed to return some day. That day was Saturday since I was in the general vicinity for an early wedding. After a 90-minute drive, I arrived at about noon, wandered through the Yugen-dou (洞内) for twenty minutes and then I was done! Interesting but a very short cave dive.

About half way through the trip, I took advantage of the lighting and took a quick video.

After that quick cave diving experience, it has given me the desire to check out a few more caves.

This is a mini-bluff across from the cave site.

Inside there were several minerals for sale but much to my chagrin, none of them were from this particular cave!

These are kind of cool and fairly cheap at 3 for 1100. Here's what I picked up.

Here are a few shots of the trip home.

Any suggestions for my next cave?? (Other than the Bat-cave.)


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