I couldn't leave Minneapolis without having experienced the Minnesota State Fair. I went there with two colleagues from the lab; Amanda and Ayako. In short, it was the biggest fair I've ever seen and I haven't even seen all of it that night. The fair goes on for two weeks so I can imagine that you really need that much time to experience it to the fullest. After having tried the Australian chips with sour cream and chili sauce (ha ha) we watched a free horse jumping show in the hippodrome. That was my first time ever so it was really good but did get boring quite quickly. We then walked to the part of the fair where the rides were. We only bought tickets for one ride which was the most insane thing I have ever tried and that was quite enough. You can see it in the photos. Basically you are strapped in a seat and then the big wheel starts lifting up and rotating. The arm also rotates and the individual seat rows also rotate. That is three modes of rotation! Needless to say, I felt dizzy and sick afterwards. It not scary, mind you and if you have the bodily resistance to being thrown upside down and around quickly then all the more power to you :)
By sheer co-incidence we met up with a girl, Beke at the fair whom I know from the place I was staying at. If you image that at the fair there were thousands and thousands of people, the odds were amazingly small. For some reason though ive defied the odds so much with Lynn that i was hardly surprised ha ha. The fair was heaps fun and would love to check it out again someday.
I then flew to NYC and took a 5 hour train to Boston. There I met up with one of my phd advisers and stayed a night at his place. He has a really nice house on the outskirts of Boston near a shallow lake. His two daughters and wife sometimes go canoeing on the lake with their own canoe boats. My talk at Boston University the following day went well and the discussions with the group researchers/students were interesting.
I am already back in NYC now and taking an easy day off. Tomorrow is my flight to England and a conference awaits. Still gonna be busy, but I cant wait to relax when i get to the Netherlands :)
Photos -> http://picasaweb.google.com/robertfarla