Thursday, September 6, 2007

The Cave

So what have I been up to, you may ask, now that I have all this home time? Data processing, tying up loose ends and getting ready for a real vacation (woohoo!) and some more field work (see, fooled you! I'm getting back on a plane AND in a car). But that isn't very fun to write about.

I've also been cleaning cobwebs. The spiders seem to be out in force, in a way I've never seen. Getting into the backyard through the gate is often a gauntlet of 4 or 5 spider webs with big spiders in the middle of them. I know I'm supposed to like them, since they eat other bugs that tend to eat us, but I'm just really not a fan. They're kind of shifty. I can't think of a time a spider bit me (or tried) in broad daylight. But let the cobwebs collect too long in the skylight and I wake up with lots of bites. See? Shifty.....

You don't really want to hear about my recent cobweb cleaning obsession though. The most interesting thing recently was a lunch time excursion with Kelsey and Nadine to the cave near Porter College. Campus is underlain in places by marble, which has influenced the topography in the area (sinkholes, caves, etc. are common features of "karst" topography; think Puerto Rico and the giant sinkhole that houses the radio telescope at the Arecibo Observatory). It was an interesting building challenge the school has had to overcome and the campus also has old quarries that were dug for the lime. The department sends undergrads there for one of the classes, but I hadn't quite managed to get there yet.

Anyway, the cave was fun, people have made odd figurines out of the clay that coats the floor and it makes for a fun lunchtime break. And now I can say I've finally been to the campus caves. One more thing checked off the list of things to do in Santa Cruz before I graduate....

Entrance to the cave:
Clay dinosaur figurine, and a tiny figurine at the bottom clinging to the ledge for dear life. You might have to look hard, above Kelsey's hand....
Tree roots lining the floor of the cave. My favorite part.

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