Natural History Museum

When I was young, I worked at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.  My time with the museum began before the museum even opened.  I was fortunate to be invited to work in their Naturalist Center, a hands-on education room geared for children, as the museum was being built.  It was a wonderful time and I had permission to roam freely through out the building as the various permanent displays were being built.

As a result of my 7 year association with the museum, Lyn was frequently there.  There were times when a portion of the museum was nearing completion and I was able to take Mom and Lyn in to see it.  They liked to know how far a display had progressed.

When the museum commissioned sculptor Dave Thomas to create two life-size bronze dinosaurs for the entrance, Mr. Thomas set up shop in a wing of the museum near the cave exhibit.  For months, he sculpted the dinosaurs in clay before casting them in bronze.  The first dinosaur to be finished was Spike, the Pentaceratops.

Shortly after Spike was installed, we convinced Lyn to pose for a picture.  It wasn't too long afterwards that the Albertasaurus was installed.

At that time, the path to the entrance took you right between the two and you felt like you were cutting through a fight, like the Sharks and the Jets were on either side of you ready to throw down.

I smile when I look at this picture.  Aside from the fact that it is one of my favorite people at one of my favorite places, I remember the moments after this picture were taken.  The day was a typically hot and sunny summer day in New Mexico.  Spike was very hot.  Lyn had reached behind her to touch the sculpture without thinking or realizing how hot the bronze would be.


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