Today was fantastic--and fantastically entertaining!
As we were driving through Baltimore, Maryland this morning, we made an impromtu trip to the Baltimore National Aquarium with Jackson. It was such a wonderful and spontaneous visit, and Jax loved every second. He was absolutely fascinated by the bubbles, sting rays, and swimming fish. Unfortunately, I didn't have my DSLR camera or my point-and-shoot, so photos from my cellphone will have to suffice. They might not be great quality, but they captured the "in the moment," which really is the most important.
This turtle cracked me up--well, actually not the turtle--the little boy in front of me looking at the turtle. He looks up and said to his mom, "Look Mommy, that turtle's eating salad!"
How wonderful it is to live so close to exciting places like the Baltimore Aquarium!
However, it wasn't until we were about the leave, that this fantastic day grew fantastically entertaining.
Sit Back. Relax. And Enjoy The Story.
After we had explored the aquarium, Mom and I were looking through the gift shop, and Justin had taken Jackson to sit just outside on a bench. Sitting there outside the gift shop, Justin saw a group of teenage kids walk out of the store with tons of merchandise. One of the young men was telling a girl how to rip off the tags and hide the stolen goods in her coat.
As the teen began to do this, Justin decided to "badge" her and to say "how about you just put those things back?" He had no intentions of the altercation going any further. At first, the girl protested by saying "I don't know where they go." So, Justin offered to walk her inside the store to return the stolen merchandise. He did not plan on telling security or anything. The girl obliged.
However, once inside the gift shop, some guys from the young lady's group approached her and told her not to listen. Justin said "just think about it" to her. She chose to follow her peers and ran out of the store with the stolen merchandise.
(yeah, all of this happened while mom and I were looking at coffee mugs with sea creatures on them)
Before we knew it, Justin came over to us, handed Jackson to mom, and said "take him." He quickly walked away with no explanation. Next, we saw Justin standing with Aquarium security. He was then asked to help security identify the kids. At this point, we had absolutely no idea what was going on. Justin left, we made our purchases (naturally), and then just waited.
A few minutes later, Justin returned. The kids were deep into the Aquarium, and security had taken over for him since we were there as patrons (ahem). We left.
*** It get's better ***
Walking to our car, Justin suddenly says "just keep walking" and turns away from us to walk in another direction. Dazed and confused, Mom, Jax, and I do just that. Then, we spot the huge group of teenagers coming across the street. (Justin didn't want them to identify us in association with him). We are 100% these are the right teenagers as they are "high-fiving" and bragging about "we got some good stuff," "good job man! that was awesome!"
I--who everyone knows, can't leave well-enough alone--watch to see where they go (into Best Buy to 'steal more stuff'), and call 911. I give the dispatcher a description of the teenagers, the details of the ordeal at the Aquarium, and Justin's description. She is very concerned about Justin's safety (although we really weren't) ... and she says she is "sending back up."
About 3 minutes later, we are reunited with Justin. As I begin to tell Justin about my 911 call, we hear sirens...LOTS of sirens. Yep, a police van and four patrol cars are rolling toward the Best Buy--Bad Boys style. My cellphone rings--it's the dispatcher--I hand the phone to Justin, who first tells her he is safe, then offers more information about the teenagers. There are PLENTY of police on the scene, so we are freed to go.