Saturday, October 03, 2009

Weekend antics

I never noticed this in the entryway until today as I struggled to haul in about 30 dowels plus groceries and more storage solutions for Ben. Velma gave me the inside scoop on Whiteface, which is indeed a mountain. Her nephew Rich used to collect clouds on it to do tests for acid rain in the 80s. The NYT covered it back then, but her explanation was more elegant:
The mountain is accessible by toll road several months of the year, and there's a weather station there. Rich would drop what he was doing when weather moved in "cloud events" and go to the mountain and "collect clouds." He kept his skis there, and would tele ski down the "slides," the places that once held vegetation and now are bare rock faces because they are steep and the earth sloughed off them during heavy weather. So Rich, the wild man, would ski on the slides because they were icy, and no one else except the crazy guys skied them, and they were free. Also very dangerous (though not as much as avalanche fields). He was on the mountain all hours ... His data was a major part of the acid rain research done before it was "a problem." Actually before it was even acknowledged.

I survived the mom visit, but did not escape yet another insane retail shopping day. Hopefully this will be the end of it for a good long while. The weather was beautiful, and then suddenly started raining, but then cleared up again.

In honor of the cloud collecting story, I took lots of cloud pics out the car window. My question of the evening is, why are dowel rods always sold w/the bar codes on the stickiest, tackiest labels?! And then I will get back to, why am I still not feeling prepared for Miami?

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