Returning home after a ten day break, completely offline and unreachable, it was a pleasure to get back to my computer, to open my mailbox and see what all I had missed! Yes, I am still catching up, so those of you to whom I have not replied, please bear with me! Logging on to Facebook, what do I notice first? Sudha mentioning a visit to the Rocks and Minerals Exhibition at Mumbai University Fort Campus!
I vaguely remembered reading something about it before I left, and hunted out a mail giving me details, and Sudha also gave me further details, assuring me that Samhith would love it! With just two days left for the exhibition, and no time to lose, I decided to head out immediately, of course, with Samhith in tow, as soon as he returned from school, never mind that the poor chap was tired after a full day of practicing for their sports day! One thing to be said for Samhith is that he is as eager as me to get out of the house and go anywhere, so off we went to catch the train to VT to reach the Convocation hall before the exhibition closed for the day! Thankfully, Central Railway co-operated, and we reached well in time..... and proceeded to enjoy the next two hours to the utmost! Join me as I take you along with me through my lens...
|The University's convocation hall is impressive, but less so than this huge chunk of Amethyst!! |
Samhith's attention was captured by this strategically placed exhibit, and never wavered again!!
|My camera doesn't even capture a tenth of the beauty of this one!|
|I wish I had seen these when I was studying crystallography!|
|So many shapes, sizes and colours! we were awed!!|
|We were so thrilled to see that we own a small piece of a similar stone!!!!|
|This looks so beautiful!!!|
|And these are the special pieces - the precious stones and fossils!|
|We hadnt imagined eggs and starfish here!!!|
|and neither did we expect teeth and claws! a pleasant surprise, though!!|
|Samhith made a friend at once! Arnold gave him a couple of stones and absolutely made his day!!! That little bag Samhith is holding is now his prized possession!! Thanks Arnold!!|
|And we loved this one!! Though it has been made artificially! |
Samhith now wants to do something similar with the stones he has!!!
|The polished ones were a treat to watch!!|
|And we have a tiny piece of a similar stone too!!!|
|Watching the polished spheres.... Samhith says they are like the different planets!!|
|This one was our favourite!!|
Moving to the fossil section, we met Prateek, a Ph.D student of paleontology, who patiently and enthusiastically explained to Samhith the whole story of evolution, the movement of landmasses, and how fossils are formed, how they are found, how they are studied and preserved!!
|Fascinated by the ammonite fossils.... after all, snails are his favourites... and these would have been HUGE ones!!|
|Fish fossils of all sizes!!|
|The story of evolution and the extinction of dinosaurs|
|And eggs... the one on the left is a fossilised dinosaur egg.. |
the centre ones are fossilized ostrich eggs, and the ones on the top right are recent emu eggs..
giving a perspective of time and fossilization!!
|The emu eggs|
|awed by the sight of the fossilized dino egg shell pieces!|
|This was the focal point of the exhibition!|
|Taking another look at the fossils|
|I loved this one!!|
|And the last exhibit..|
|A last look..|
As we left the hall, well past the closing time of 7 PM, Samhith bidding goodbye to each one of his new friends, feeling extremely gratified by being asked to come again on Friday and Saturday, he remained awed by the exhibits he had seen. We had recently been talking about different professions and different courses to be pursued after school (a discussion initiated by some workshops in school), and he found himself realizing that this was yet another option for him. As he put it , "Amma, if I become a geologist, I can travel all over the world..... and collect everything I want. I dont even have to look for a place to keep all that I collect.I think I should become a geologist or a paleo.. whatever that Prateek bhaiyya is. He explained it so well, and I think I would like to become one too!! I can study history, geography, nature and stones, all of which I like!!!"
Unfortunately, with so many things happening at once, it is impossible for us to attend the exhibition on friday or saturday, but we have already resolved to keep up with the events happening in the Department of Extra-Mural Studies, and attend the exhibition again next year... and in any case, keep in touch with the people we met! He now wants to take his stone collection over and get it classified!!! So, geologists, watch out! You are soon going to be bombarded with questions and stones galore to classify!!! Special thanks to Sudha for encouraging me to take Samhith to the exhibition!!