Mae's Real Stories

Memories for Miriam, Alice, Theo, Delia, Tessa and anyone else who would like to be here

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Alice and Miriam and the Penguins

Alice and Miriam are planning to make greeting cards and sell them. They want to give the money to help save penguins. They already know a lot about different kinds of penguins. They have looked at a website of an organization that is trying to save penguins. One part of this website is in the picture below. I hope they will be very successful!

Saturday, September 15, 2007


The Second-Tallest Structure

In Toronto, Canada, you can see a very tall building called the CN Tower from almost everywhere you walk. It was the tallest structure in the world until the day we arrived, last Wednesday. In a far country called Dubai, a new tall building is under construction, and on Wednesday, the workers made it just a little taller than the CN Tower.

I could see the tower across this stadium:
We could see the tower when we walked across a little bridge near Lake Ontario:

If you look at the big building in this photo (which also appears in the previous photo), you can see the shadow of the CN Tower:
It's fun to see a very tall building. An elevator takes people up to the top of the tower where they can see the lake and the city. We did not take this elevator ride, we just looked at the tower from many places in Toronto.

If you like numbers about tall buildings and structures here are a few:
Burj Dubai -- reached 555 meters on Wednesday (to be completed 2008)
CN Tower -- 553 meters (not counted as a building, only a structure, completed 1976)
Taipei 101 -- 508 meters, former tallest building before Burj Dubai (completed 2001)
Empire State Building -- 443.2 meters, once the tallest building (completed 1931)
Eiffel Tower -- 324 meters (completed 1889)

There are many more tall buildings in the world, and several under construction that may be taller than Burj Dubai in a few years.

Here is Arny's photo of the CN Tower from last year:

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Spider Stories

Spiders live in the back yard. You can see a spider waiting in the hole in the web that he has built in the fence. You can see how another spider has covered the leaves of some plants with his web.

On an island named Jamaica people tell lots of stories about a spider named Nancy or Anansi. Anansi the spider is a kind of god, who came from Africa a long time ago, along with the ancestors of the people who live in Jamaica now.

If you meet Anansi, sometimes he looks like a man and sometimes he looks like a spider. He is not mean like Pele, the goddess in Hawaii, but he is very tricky. Most of the stories about Anansi the spider god are about how he tricked other animal gods.

Anansi is a wonderful story teller himself. In fact, in these stories, Anansi the Spider is the god who owns all the stories. Another god, called Sky God once owned the stories, but Anansi did a whole lot of tricks, so now he has all the stories. Sky God told lots of other animal gods that they could have all the stories, but first they would have to bring him some dangerous creatures: hornets, a big snake called Python, and a big wild cat called Leopard. None of the other animal gods could figure out how to do what Sky God asked.

Anansi tricked the hornets into a hollow gourd. First he splashed some water around, and told the hornets that it was raining, so they should hide in his gourd. Of course then he closed it up and took them right to Sky God.

Anansi trapped Python by another trick. He told Python he needed to measure him to prove that Python was the biggest snake in the world. He convinced Python to stretch out against a stick. Then Anansi tied Python to the stick and took him right to Sky God.

Trapping Leopard was harder. First Anansi made a deep pit, so that Leopard would fall in. Leopard asked for help, and so Anansi told him to tie his tail to a tree so that he could get out. Sprong! The tree snapped Leopard up in the air so Anansi could bring Leopard right to Sky God.

Sky God had the creatures he asked for. He had to give all his stories to Anansi. Some people say that Anansi got the stories from Tiger, another powerful animal god, but in this story he got them from Sky God.

I just read a book about Anansi, and so I started looking out for spiders in my yard.

Sunday, September 09, 2007


Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins

This weekend we went to a party in St.Louis. Jean and Jack were celebrating their anniversary -- they are in the first photo, with Jean wearing her corsage. We visited with relatives. The second photo shows Lenny with his sisters, Jean and Ruby. The next photos show Jon and Julie, and then Ruby and Julie. We have a lot of relatives in St.Louis.

I only managed to take a few photos. I hope other people will send me photos of more people, so I can have more photos to add here.


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