Niagara Falls

It’s a tourist Icon, a tourist trap, one of those places that is a touchstone of a nation. This is my third trip and each time I have found myself reflecting on my life and where I am.

.NatalieNiagara Ryan Niagara

This picture was taken in 1974 and was my first trip to the falls with my brothers. It was a big event then.  We were on our way to Saskatchewan to visit my father’s family. I learned a lot about my family and where I came from. I also learned to read a map. I was 14 going on 45 and ready to be an adult. Of course the world did not yet take me seriously.

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In 1990, sixteen years later, I Dick and I went with my kids to Kingston to present our discovery of the waves that would later become the topic of our book Embryogenesis Explained. I was a young divorcee with three young children. Dick and I were early in our relationship so it was a scary but wonderful time for me. I was a second year undergrad. I had just published my first abstract.  It felt like my life had turned around and we were going to be okay.Kingston_0074

Now I am back again at the falls in 2015, twenty five years later. It has been a wonderful mostly happy rollercoaster ride. The kids are grown. They turned out fine and I am so proud of them. I have grandchildren their age. I finished the PhD and earned that big “Dr.” in front of my name. We are retired. The book is done and the story of the waves and their role in embryogenesis is complete. I carry 30 pounds more than last trip and I have a lot of well earned wrinkles and grey. Wow!

I won’t get into visiting the falls. There are dozens of websites about visiting the falls, what to see, where to get good deals, what the latest and best things are. I’ll just share some shots of this trip and hopefully I will have a chance to get back again someday and add a few more pictures to the set. I will say this. Hang on and enjoy the years because they sure do fly past quickly!

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