I stopped at the Royal BC Museum in Victoria, BC while on my lunchbreak – to get a coffee from the coffee shop, use the washroom, that sort of thing – and I came around the corner in the lobby to find this:
Aha! The suspense starts! Inconspicuous crates bearing labels with ‘Do Not Open Until September 28th’ were stacked, unassumingly, against a wall. No fan-fare, no signs, no nothing. Just the crates.
Do Not Open Until September 28th????? It was only September 13th!
Don’t they know better than to do that to me? I can’t WAIT! I skulked around the crates, itching to know what was inside. Now my imagination was fuelled.
Were more dishes discovered from the Titanic? And would they let me buy some to add to my collection of mismatched teacups? Or what if they are Dead Sea Scrolls? Or what if they found the Holy Grail?
Already wired, I skipped the coffee, but the washroom was a must. As I later left the building, I knew I had to get a hold of myself. My thoughts were racing; I had to put the crates out of my mind. With TOO MANY days to WAIT and ponder before the great unveiling (I was tempted to sneak in a crowbar), I had more important things to think about – to worry about.
Like if I had enough hairspray to last me the week.
Days later I went back, anxious to see if anything had changed. The September 28th timeframe? Forget it. I was sure it was just a gimmick to throw me off, the museum staff conspiring against me.
So I entered the museum lobby from a different direction than days before, hoping to throw THEM off their tracks, and made a beeline for where the crates were. I came around the corner, and……..the crates were GONE!
What? They're gone!? Before I could work myself into a later any further, I heard a low, snarling growl behind me.
Had the Woolly Mammoth from the Ice Age display come to life? Do we evacuate,for fear of being trampled?
Oh God! I hoped my hair would stay in place if I ended up in an ambulance. If I survived, that is.
I slowly turned, fearful of being stabbed by a great tusk (although I realize I would be miles shorter than the tip of the deadly ivory), and I saw this:
The crates had been moved, and MORE added. But this time they were roped off – to hold the curious back (meaning me). And aha! There was a sign! At last I would finally get to know what’s inside!
The sign had a picture of seals accompanied with the words ’10 More Sleeps!’ Not that there is anything wrong with seals. In fact, I find great joy in seeing them in the water when I go to the beach, or when I see them from the ferry, or from the other beach, or from the other beach, or from the other beach...
Um, I can see seals anytime. I do appreciate them, and am thankful for them, and I do not wish them harm, but…. I got excited for seals? (Again, there is nothing wrong with seals). Alright, then. 10 more sleeps until I can see the seal display. I can get excited for that - I guess.
Another growl accompanied by a high screech had me almost dropping my camera.
Um, I didn't know seals sound like that. Not the ones I know, at least.
I scooted over to the coat-check desk, and asked the attendant if she knew what was inside the crates.
Frustrated, she grumbled, “They never tell us anything.”
Do I believe her, I wondered? These folks are pretty secretive…
The growling continued, the woolly mammoth stayed put, and I had to head to back to work – but not before I stopped at the drugstore for my hairspray.
10 sleeps later I went back, skulking through the back entrance to where the growling ‘seal’ crates had been. Black drapes, 20 feet high, hid the area. Well, I wasn't going to let a few drapes stop me, and given there were no ropes to hold back the curious (again, me), I went through an opening, and found this:
Guess I will be coming back on May 17,2012 to see the dinosaurs - but this time with the men-folk of my house! (The 'seal sign' was obviously a ruse to throw me. Because, as you know, this was all about me.)
Be sure to mark your calendars for May 17, 2012, when the dinosaurs and the mammoth meet at the Royal BC Museum to swap tales of old. Visit their website at www.royalbcmuseum.bc.ca for more information, or visit their blog at Royal BC Museum: Where did you shoot that mammoth?
(Many thanks to the Royal BC Museum for use of their Woolly Mammoth photo)
Royal BC Museum, 675 Belleville Street, Victoria, BC Canada V8W 9W2