Saturday was forecast to be gray, rainy, and cold, which we were not looking forward to, although it suggested that maybe there'd be less of the incredibly packed park that we had seen two years before during Columbus Day weekend, when the park was so crowded it filled up and the cell phone network crashed. This more or less panned out: while the park would be crowded in the evening, it wasn't impossibly crowded. (On the other hand, Sunday was busier than we expected; possibly people shifted their attendance plans.)
But we didn't figure to spend the afternoon in the park, since the Merry-Go-Round Museum is in Sandusky and we wanted to visit it. We'd missed the museum this summer. We also had to stop in at CVS, as we needed some scissors to trim moleskin padding for sore feet. We have plenty of scissors at home, but we failed to bring any with us, another item in our travel kit that we overlooked. I'd had thought we could get a cheap $2 pair of the kind you can barely cut fingernails with; I was wrong. It's on the list of garage sale things, barely used, now.
The Merry-Go-Round Museum was glad to see us, of course, and I'm not sure whether they recognized us but they didn't offer us the usual guided tour of the exhibits. We've been through several times and bunny_hugger probably could give the spiel by heart; I couldn't. It might have just been a sleepy day; only a few people were there while we were, and they didn't get the guided tour either.
One of the Museum's carvers was there, though, and he did some explaining of what he was doing to the modest group of elderly men staring eagerly at his tools. He mentioned something surprising, that he was the father of one of the people who does craft exhibitions in Cedar Point's Frontier Town. Those exhibitions are kind of fossils of the 1970s idea that theme parks had to include some educational component, showing off how people did things by hand in the old days when people did things, and it never occurred to either of us that there might be any link between them and the Merry-Go-Round Museum. That we might have predicted one is just there because the Museum does a lot of restoration work as well as carving of new figures.
For example each year they carve and raffle off a horse. This year's is done in a romantic theme, with valentine hearts across its saddle and blanket decor. The back of the saddle even has a little carved heart reading ``MG + RM 2013'' on its back, a delightful little touch that had me wondering who MG and RM were until bunny_hugger pointed out what it had to mean.
As it was the Halloween season the carousel organ was set up with Halloween-themed tunes; one of our rides was thus done to the accompaniment of the theme to Batman, which is a hard one to recognize right away when arranged for band organ. It was delightful when we realized what we were hearing, though.
When we got off the ride, a fellow who was hanging around the ride's exit held up his hand. I thought he was going for a high-five and I complied in the awkward, fumbling way I give all high-fives. He wasn't looking for a high-five. He was trying to show something off, although I forget just what. He was apparently a mildly challenged fellow. Later on he used these platforms where you can put a sheet of paper over a template and rub crayons over it to produce an image of a carousel horse, something left out for the kids to have something to do while their parents look at the non-moving parts of the exhibit, and gave his art to bunny_hugger. He was a bit worried later on when he didn't see her holding it, but she had accepted it honestly and showed him that it was in her purse.
After the museum we wanted to go over to the coffee shop we'd visited some and get something to warm ourselves and recharge for the rest of the afternoon. The coffee shop had closed, something like an hour before we got there. And Sandusky at about 4 pm on a Saturday in October is … really, really closed. I think there was a bar open, but even the knick-knack stores had shuttered for the day. We want to be good tourists in the town and spend some money not at the multinational corporations but Sandusky really has to do a little something to meet us partway.
Also, that weird mid-century modern building with a purpose we couldn't identify last time we got a fresh look at. They've papered over the windows so we couldn't see whether there were stacks of newspapers in there. Since it's adjacent to the Sandusky Register's office we suspect it is, or was, a distribution center for the printed papers. It's still neat.
We returned to Cedar Point the geographical feature but we had something else to do before going into Cedar Point the amusement park.
Trivia: In 1875 London's Central Telegraph Office housd 450 telegraph instruments, linked by 68 internal pneumatic tubes. Source: The Victorian Internet, Tom Standage.
Currently Reading: The Number Sense: How The Mind Creates Mathematics, Stanislas Debaene.