Tag Archives: museum

Yale Writers’ Conference (part 2)…..

If you were here yesterday, you’ve already seen Part I. But if not, you can click here to read it first.

Yesterday was about the speakers and the workshops, but today is about the other stuff–the friends you will make and the fun you will have.

I’ve met some amazing writers through Yale and I’m thrilled to say that many of them have also become friends. They inspire me, encourage me, and make me laugh.

2013_June_18_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_748 2013_June_12_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_159 Yale Writers Conf 2014-Jun 15, 2014-15Yale Writers Conf 2014-Jun 09, 2014-36I don’t have pictures of everyone I keep in contact with but these are my girls! They are talented, kind, and super fun to be around. In fact, making writer friends is probably the biggest benefit I can see in attending writers conferences. I’d say I make at least one new friend at every writer event I go to. No one in my house really cares too much about reading or writing (I know, I have failed them all miserably), so having friends who share the same passion is amazing.

I mentioned yesterday that dinner is not included in the tuition for the Yale conference. That gives you a chance to get out and explore New Haven. There are tons of restaurants–Chinese, Indian, Burger Joints, Pubs, Mexican. Here are some of my favorite places:

Tomatillo – think Chipotle but better. It’s super casual and not too expensive. No alcohol is served there.

2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_22 2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_23And then there is Oaxaca Mexican Restaurant. They have yummy guacamole and the margaritas aren’t so bad either.

2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_572 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_571 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_570 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_569Then there is the Indian Vegetarian Restaurant Thali Too. Their dahl is dahlish!

2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_315The Atticus Bookstore has yummy tomato soup and great salads and sandwiches.

2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_420One of the places I enjoyed most was Mory’s. It’s a private club but they invite the writers from the conference to come anytime during their time in New Haven. The side patio is lovely.

2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_321 2013_June_12_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_160 2013_June_12_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_157Ordinary has the most fabulous grilled cheese sandwich, but be patient, you might have to wait a while for it. 😉 I also loved the beet salad at the Heirloom Restaurant in The Study Hotel.

For the world’s most famous hamburger, go here. There is very little room to sit down, so plan on “to go”. Just fyi, they don’t offer many condiment options. Well, you can have ketchup, onions, or I think tomato. But nothing else. Think Soup Natzi. And learn from my mistake–do not, I repeat, do not ask for mayo. And, dear God, whatever you do, do not ask for french fries. It’s chips or nothing. Personally, I don’t get it. The meat was rawish and the burger is served on bread rather than a proper bun.  But, like, I said, the line was out the door.

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Yale holds their conference in June. Both years that I attended New Haven was also hosting the Arts and Ideas festival at the same time. Bonus!2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_240New Haven is full of amazing libraries and museums. You could easily spend ten days just sightseeing. There is the Peabody Museum of Natural History.

 The Sterling Memorial Library:

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The Bass Library:2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_3

Yale University Art Gallery: 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_337 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_361 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_389 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_396

The Center for British Art:2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_421

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The Beinecke Rare Book Library where you can see the Gutenberg Bible:

 

2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_493 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_494 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_498 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_499 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_500 Some of the other fun things you will see around town:

Skull and Bones.

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It is an “ivy” league school after all. 2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_8 2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_9

Yummy kettle corn2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_12 2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_24 2013_June_09_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_29 2013_June_10_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_55 2013_June_10_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_56 2013_June_10_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_57 2013_June_10_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_60

Some people say rubbing his foot will bring you good luck. Other people say that rubbing his foot will make you look like a dork. 2013_June_12_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_129 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_224 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_235 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_237 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_242 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_246 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_257 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_291 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_293 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_317 2013_June_15_yale writers workshop_ellenweeren_326So, why are you still here? Log off and go get your submission ready! 😉

For the love of toilets…………..

In an effort to get out and see more of Delhi, I took the kids to the Toilet Museum. They thought I was kidding. It is actually (kind of) funny that in a land where bathrooms are hard to find that there is a museum dedicated to all things toilet.

And if you are in the U.S. and you are thinking, “dang, now I have to go to Delhi, I must see the toilet museum,”  – fear not. In Wisconsin there is also a toilet museum. In fact, I think it is the world’s largest toilet museum. You can thank Kohler for that. And if I understood things correctly, there is also a toilet paper museum. No need for a passport.

If you don’t believe me – click this link for the museum in Delhi – http://www.sulabhtoiletmuseum.org/pg01.htm. I knew it was going to be good when the first line of the link said you should seek help if you have ever wondered what a toilet museum would be like.

I have to say it was interesting. For example, did you know that John Harrington invented the modern toilet. I just happen to love this guy! Yes, I heart John Harrington and that big fluffy collar of his.

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And did you know that the reason Americans call the toilet the John is because John Douglass was famous for making pottery basins for the toilet and he would sign them John? An artist must sign his work. Sign he did. See, now you will sleep better tonight because you know that.

This made me laugh. It is a replica of an outhouse type toilet used at construction sites in the U.S. many, many years ago. I don’t know if you can read the signs but the door on the top says “Management” and the door on the bottom says “Employees”. It’s disgusting and hysterical at the same time. And no, there was not a hole in the ceiling of the employee section.

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In Thailand, they are teaching elephants to use the toilet so that the tourists are not constantly side-stepping big piles of poo (not the technical term, but you get the idea). I once considered trying to toilet train our cats.  However, I spent what felt like years getting Number One Hubby to put the seat down – cats would require the seat to be up. I quickly checked “potty training the cats” off my bucket list. But this takes over-achieving to a whole new level.

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This is a picture of the man who loves all things toilet. He was charming and very informative. And, yes, that is a picture of Jennifer Lopez. She is apparently even famous at the toilet museum because at one point Ben Affleck gave her a bejeweled toilet. Now, that is love.

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There was a very detailed explanation of how this traveling port-a-potty works. I have to be honest, there were a couple of times when we all zoned out. So, I did not catch the whole idea behind it – but I think you can figure it out.

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This man in Seoul built his house in the shape of a toilet. Did you know that there was a World Toilet Association? You do now.

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And the award for the most expensive toilet goes to………..drum roll please…………. NASA. Shocking.

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Remember I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on the internet, so you must do with this info what you will….

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This toilet has an incinerator at the bottom and makes ashes out of waste.

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And then there were the mascots – seriously – there are mascots. Can you guess their names?

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I didn’t tell you everything – I didn’t want to spoil all the surprises, just in case you decide to visit. The tour takes about half an hour.

It turns out that the toilet museum is not just about toilets. It is located on a campus where they are studying waste management. The curator offered a tour of that part of the facility as well, but we opted out of that seeing that section.

The tour was free, although I did give a donation at the end of the tour.

It might sound crazy, but we enjoyed ourselves and we laughed the whole way home. Now I have a whole new threat to level against them – if you aren’t good, I will tell your friends you went to the toilet museum – and LIKED it. And it was a fabulous opportunity for my children to see that if you are enthusiastic about your “work”, you will love your job and you will bring joy to other people. Who would have thought that we would make such great family memories at the toilet museum?