Gadling Take FIVE: Week of October 18–October 24

This week Annie Scott joined the Gadling team of blogging fiends, and our fingers have been flying across keyboards capturing a mishmash of travel related items.

Along with our mini-series “Catching the Travel Bug” we’ve made another mini-series launch. Tune in for The Sounds of Travel twice a week when Gadling bloggers share with you the music that has inspired their travel. Grant began the series today with Great Lake Swimmers. Meg’s is ready to go. Look for it.

As I browsed the wealth of other info and travel finds, here are five posts that caught my eye. Each touted the unusual. There are more than just these posts in the bounty, but because this is Gadling Take FIVE, this is it.

  • Meg’s post on the Museum Funeral Customs highlighted this museum that captures one of the most fascinating aspects of human behavior.
  • If you are heading to Thailand, consider a trip to the Buddhist temple Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew, 370 miles north of Bangkok. Anna provides details about how it is entirely made up of recycled glass bottles.
  • Rabbit fans can see scads and scads of them at Robben Island in South Africa–at least for another week. Aaron reported that on Nov. 1 the island is being closed for two weeks while the population is thinned out.
  • For a most unusual ride, Jeffery suggests the Zeppelin. It is making its way from Beaumont, Texas to California.
  • And, Josh gave us the disappointing news that it is no longer possible to see the most expensive toilet in the world in person. He provided a video though. It’s not quite the same, but it will have to do.

Museum of Funeral Customs

If you’re looking for another great Halloween fun house, this isn’t it, but if you want to learn a few things about death and funerals, you’ll probably enjoy a visit to the Museum of Funeral Customs in Springfield, IL, conveniently located near the most popular tomb in America.

As one of few things every human experiences, death and grieving rituals have a wide, multicultural and ancient scope. Exhibits at the museum shed light on many different types of funeral rituals, and offer visitors a behind-the-scenes look into body preservation and presentation. You’ll see lots of different gadgets and tools used in the embalming process as well as a postmortem fashion display, showing popular funeral outfits for the deceased.

Of course, there’s a gift shop. The most popular souvenir, according to the director, are the locally-made chocolate coffins. When you open the lid, there’s a chocolate mummy inside. Now there’s something you can give out to trick-or-treaters!

After your visit to the museum, go less than a mile to Lincoln’s tomb, and while you’re there, be sure to visit the defiant tomb of Mr. Accordion, which is another fascinating and amusing story. Read about it here.