monday july 17
- flew out to minnesota, saw pretty clouds & pretty lightning in the clouds on the way
- i'm an alien in this place. everyone needs an eyeful i guess
- rented a mitsubishi mirage which felt plastic compared to my 911, but did the job
- arrived at the cheap hotel i booked to find they'd literally just been robbed. the woman at the front counter was still crying. i offered her a hug & she accepted. i hope it helped.
- my room was kind of bad: the wall-less shower was set up so it leaked all over the carpet in front of the door. quality. but the bed was fine.
- fargo was on tv at 1am, heh
music: schumann - scenes from childhood op.15 (trimmed to fit)
tuesday july 18
- stopped through dunkin donuts for nostalgia breakfast
- drove to orfield labs, wherein lies the quietest place on earth
- learned about the whole place & the science they do there
- experienced the reverb room, where a simple hand clap continued for ages
- then on to the anechoic chamber. it's fucking awesome. it's SO sound-dead in there that everything sounds odd. i kind of loved it. (note: though a bunch of places online talk about it driving people crazy after 45 minutes & how they have rules against same, that's not actually a thing.)
- drew, my tour guide, left me alone in the anechoic chamber for an hour. i had a blanket to lie on & he shut off the lights for the full experience. it was cool being there, & i had a few of the side effects others have reported, but mostly my tinnitus ended up being the focal point, so i didn't get as much out of this experience as i'd hoped. i wasn't able to hear my blood rushing or my heartbeat over the tinnitus, but there in the otherwise silent dark, i did feel like the room was tilting downward, which was interesting, & a few times i saw fairly bright lights that obviously didn't exist. it was neat.
- when i left, i found it had poured rained while i was in there. had no idea, of course.
normal conversation in the reverb room
- with several hours before my flight, i decided to hit the mall of america
- they have almost a whole floor of VR games & such at a place called "smaaaash". i rode flymax, jurassic escape, & world moto jump championship. they were silly but fun.
- then i headed to nickelodeon universe. it was annoying & full of kids, & i didn't want to stay very long. i rode one of my favorites, the "swing-along", twice, & called it good.
- ate at shake shack, which is a customer of mine at work, & was shocked by how good their burger & strawberry mint lemonade were (though i had them cut the lemonade with seltzer - fast food lemonade is always way too strong).
- headed to the airport after an expert-mode search for a gas station & returned the car
- had a pretty sunset on the way back
next up: i'm going to south africa in april (yes, including cage diving with great white sharks), then to greece, albania, croatia, & montenegro in september. bye!