Great Falls National Park Field Trip

At a lot of schools, each grade has their own special field trip. The farm in kindergarten, Jamestown in fourth grade, that sort of thing. At my school we don’t really have a special field trip for third grade. I decided I wanted to see if we could turn Great Falls into our third grade thing.

Black Vultures

We went on our field trip yesterday, when it was rainy, cool (but not cold), and a little gross. The kids had a great time and the teachers enjoyed it, too (although having to navigate freaked most of the teachers out).


Since I had my intern and some parents to cover my class, I worked with the students from another class. I taught them how to “read” the blazes and they did an excellent job of navigating. It was neat to see how quickly they picked up the idea of blazes!

Taking Flight

Mason’s Mark

The students were really interested in how moss didn’t grow on all sides of the trees, and how the fungi were a different color depending on its location on the tree.


One of the local Fire and Rescue teams was out. They appeared to be practicing, which was quite exciting for the students.

Fire and Rescue

Mather Gorge


From the Bridge

Pine Tree

One nice thing about the rain was that we had a lot of low clouds and fog and it made for some good pictures!

Mather Gorge II

Great Falls

Day Trips With Mother: Ant Village

Ant Village Seoul

On August 11th, Mother and I went to 개미 마을 (literally “Ant Village”) in Seoul. Ant Village is one of the old “moon towns,” build high in the hills in Seoul.

The area is poor and underdeveloped compared to other areas of Seoul, even compared to the immediate surrounding area. Development in the area has been restricted, and several years ago, art students painted murals in the area.

Mother didn’t know about the area, nor did any of her friends. I was a bit uncomfortable walking around, taking photos, for reasons I can’t quite put into words. But I really was interested in documenting what I saw.

Art Imitating Life



Spiderman Day

Good Man put together something from IKEA for me. Midway through he said, “Oh, by the way, I am using this to stop the hammer from scratching.” I looked up and noticed that he had pounded holes into one of my nice cloth napkins.

“Why didn’t you use one of the cotton rags?”

“Oh. I don’t know.”

What could I do but laugh?


“That house is decked out for Halloween,” I said, pointing to a house whose yard was covered in fake webs, spiders, and pumpkins.

“Why all the spider webs?”

“Because they’re spoo-oo-ooky,” I said.

“Why not have Spiderman Day?” Good Man wondered out loud, “Well, I guess then you would need Batman Day, Darth Vader Day, Star Trek Day…”


Good Man teases me because I find money all the time on our walks. Good Man will also entirely ignore things. He’ll notice them, comment (“There’s a buck on the ground”) and do nothing about it. I am not like that.

I am a magpie.

A few weeks ago, I found a laser level in the middle of the street. It worked! Awesome. Good Man groaned and rolled his eyes, “Why are you always picking things up?”

This past weekend, I found a foam hockey puck in the street. It has the Capitals’ logo on it, and I have a friend who loves the Caps, so I’ll be sending it to her. Since Good Man had pockets, I made him carry the puck home.

This morning I went on my walk alone (Good Man had an early-morning work engagement). It was rainy (the entire fall season has been rainy!) and right before I walked into our door I found a Subway gift card on the ground. I figured it was trash but picked it up to check the balance online.

It had $5 on it. Hey, not much, but I just got paid $5 to walk.

Being a magpie can be useful.

I’m His Moon

“What planet are you on?” I teased Good Man after he said something silly in the car.

“[Good Man] Planet,” he said, then, in a softer voice, “and you are my moon.” I laughed and Good Man grinned. “Because you reflect my shiny parts!”

“Wouldn’t reflecting your light make you the sun?”

“I am a light-emitting planet.”

“I don’t think those exist.”

“They do in [Good Man] Universe!” he sang.

Well, That Was Weird

Yesterday was…weird.

8:30 am
My car moved itself during the night so I could not find it in the morning. I always park on one side of the lot, and I pull in. My car was backed into a position on the other side of the lot.

It turned out the towing company that polices our complex’s lot managed to tow it by mistake, then brought it back, and backed it into a different spot.

9:00 am
Showed up late to work. Discovered that in two different shipments, the book club I get books for my students through had sent me 26 additional books I didn’t order. Called them. They had no idea what I was talking about.

10:00 am
Walked by a student’s desk and he said to me very dreamily, “You’re really pretty today, Ms.”

“Thank you,” I replied, a bit confused. I was wearing jeans, ratty sneaks, and a cute but loose sweater.

10:13 am
In a circle activity, students did very well, so I told them to give their right-hand partner a pat on the back. The student standing next to me, a boy, patted my ass four times before I finally said, “Please stop patting my bottom.”

10:16 am
While talking about acting, voice, and expression, the student sitting cross the circle from me (also a boy), dramatically blew me a huge kiss.

10:17 am
I slipped into a daydream, wondering if pheromones are real.

4:13 pm
I asked the office if I got a package I was supposed to get. The office said no. I looked around and found my package in the outgoing mail box with the local post office’s address circled. “Wrong Address” one of the secretaries had written.

My name and the school’s address were both clearly marked on the package.