Weekend Trip: Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park


This past Saturday (6/30), one of my good friends was visiting his inlaws in Dallas. So, I loaded up the family and met up with him for lunch at the Twisted Root Burger Company (hadn’t seen him in 5 years!). Lunch was fantastic! The food was great and I really enjoyed getting to visit with Andy and having the opportunity to meet his wife for the second time.

After lunch, we said goodbye to Andy and his wife and headed on over to Fair Park. After an almost 2 and a half hour drive from Longview, I figured we’d stretch our legs a bit and visit the Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park.

Who knew there was a Hall street in Dallas? I didn’t.

The Texas Star Ferris wheel. The largest Ferris wheel in North America, of course.

A fountain in Fair Park was apparently calling my son’s name. Thankfully, he did not heed that call. Not that I would have blamed him with the 100 degree heat.

All of the aquarium’s displays were at toddler level. This meant my son could engage the aquatic life on his own terms.

This guy was pretty cool looking!

Whenever we’d go to any lake in Arizona or Nevada as a kid, my Dad would always joke about snapping turtles. Guess what, they do exist in Texas!


This Alligator Snapping Turtle had his own ecosystem on his back.


As you can tell, I loved this guy. Just check out those claws!

I end with a symbiotic relationship that certainly must “suck”. Get it?

Overall, the Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park is a fun way to spend an hour or two. They also have an excellent sting ray pool where you can feed and pet the wondrous monsters as they glide by. I enjoyed putting my hands in the tank, barely moving them, and being swarmed by sting rays! I don’t remember the sting ray exhibit at Sea World ever being this good.

Career Ambitions: Part 1


Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your Life.
The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40 year olds I know still don’t. -Sunscreen by Baz Luhrmann

Best road trip ever.

When I was in elementary school, I wrote in my yearbook that I wanted to be a horse trainer. At the time, I was taking horse back riding lessons- I learned to ride bareback- and thought that that was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. My passion for the American West and my constant consumption of Louis L’Amour novels further fueled this childhood dream.

Our career ambitions seem to change with age and the overall passage of time. By high school, I was convinced that I wanted to work as a killer whale trainer at Sea World. My love for the ocean, deep sea exploration,  and the thought of living a laid back lifestyle in San Diego pushed me to actually check into this position. In my research, I learned that you have to be a certified scuba diver as well as an amazing swimmer. A degree in marine biology or psychology would also help with the selection process. Three things pushed me away from this potential field however:

  1. I am not the greatest swimmer.
  2. Outside of being a Sea World trainer, a degree in marine biology pays next to nothing. The only person I knew at the time, with a degree in marine biology, worked in a hazardous materials department due to pay.
  3. I took a marine biology class at the junior college and barely passed. The class ate my lunch! The only reason I ended up passing was due to a girl I was sitting next to. Thankfully, she could easily follow along and was more than willing to help me. Lesson learned: Always sit next to the smart one.
Now I won’t lie, whenever I visit Sea World I still want to work there. Maybe not as a killer whale trainer but in some sort of deep sea explorer capacity. They have a department for that, right?