Getty Field Trip

Gentle readers will recall that Kongo loves field trips with his two granddaughters.  This week the monkey climbed aboard a school bus with 22 budding classical scholars from Mrs. Hutson’s 3rd Grade Class and a handful of chaperones to visit the Getty Center in Los Angeles.  What a trip!  Most adults may think that art and 3rd graders won’t mix.  Not these kids!  They were all over this like Rococo on Versailles. The Getty Center is a wonderful place for children.  There are plenty of fountains, gardens, and outdoor things for them to experience.  Inside … well, inside it’s a…

A Visit with the Gipper

Today Kongo hauled himself over to Simi Valley (about ten miles from his treehouse) to finally see the Gipper.  That would be Ronald Reagan and his presidential library set on the top of a high hill overlooking the valley.  This was not a political visit.  Mrs. Kongo’s sister was visiting over the long weekend and it was on her bucket list.  Kongo is pretty much a democrat but that’s obviously not working out too well at the moment so, what the heck, might as well relive some of the glory years of the 1980s.  Kongo was a lot younger then,…

Liver Reading for Dummies

Just when you thought it was safe to visit a museum, the Getty Villa in Malibu, California turned a bunch of Haruspices loose on an unsuspecting public.  A Haruspex, in case your mind has temporarily gone blank, is a person trained to divine the will of the gods in entrails — particularly sheep entrails.  In other words, a Haruspex is a liver reader.  (Kongo knows you knew that, right?)  Indeed, the word haruspex is a combination of two pretty old words:  haru, which means entrails and spec, which means to observe or to look at.  (spectacles — get it?)  You should remember these terms…

Cooking at the Getty Villa

Kongo headed to the Getty Villa on the Malibu coast on Friday to dine with the gods.  No really.  He attended a culinary workshop titled “Dining with the Gods” based on a real menu that would have been served up at a villa on the shores of the Gulf of Naples early in the first century.  The Getty Villa is inspired by the floor plan of the Villa dei Papyri owned by Lucius Calpurnius Pico Caesoninus.  Getty’s villa was built to house Mr. Getty’s extensive collections of ancient Roman artifacts.  The original villa, now partially excavated by archeologists, sat about halfway…