Friday, December 24, 2010

Atmospheric Anomalies...

...are interesting to drive in.

On Monday I drove to Springville, UT with Chelsea to visit family. We stayed with my sister and visited two of Chelsea's. It was a fun visit and I didn't want to come back so soon.

The drive up to Springville was a little stressful, due to snowfall. I consider myself a skilled and cautious driver, so it only took about an hour longer than normal. Saw the aftermath of several accidents, but didn't even come close to having one of our own. Yay for me.

On the way back, we didn't have snow, but fog. I'd never driven in fog before. As a driver, I would prefer to be the only one on the road, mostly because I don't trust the other drivers to know what they're doing. Driving in fog gave the impression I was the only one around. Of course, I like to be able to see a ways ahead, to know what's coming. Fog isn't so good for that.

As I drove, I stared intently into the dense blanket of gray ahead of me, trying to see farther ahead than the 20 feet or so that I could actually see. Occasionally, in the oncoming lanes, I would see a dark shadow that would coalesce into a vehicle for a couple moments, then disappear almost as soon as I could see it in my rear-view mirror.

A couple times, as I was staring into the fog, I would realize that I could see a car ahead of me. The fog had dissipated just enough to let me see about twice as far ahead as I could before. I hadn't realized this was happening, as I was so focused on being alert for any slow moving vehicle that I wouldn't be able to see until I was right behind it.

Chelsea and I arrived safe and sound, no problems.

When I left the house to come to work, Cedar City was blanketed in a dense fog. I've never seen fog in Cedar City before. It made the journey to work seem rather dream-like. In rain or snow I can still see far enough ahead to know that the stoplight 6 blocks away just turned red or green or whatever. With fog, I could barely see two blocks ahead of me. It was almost like the rest of the city didn't exist until I got close enough, then went away after I passed.

All the electric lights I could see were diffused, like looking at the house across the street through a frosted window pane.

Plus, the fog makes everything seem quieter.

Overall, I rather like fog. Does that make me weird?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Early This Morning...

...3:30 AM, to be precise.

I happened across an article in USAToday that caught my attention. It was a brief look at the yearly sky spectacle known as the Geminids meteor shower. Apparently, the Perseids in August get all the attention, because, really, who doesn't like stargazing on a clear summer night? The Geminids have been a yearly occurrence for hundreds of years, according to an article I read. And the big difference that separates the Geminids from other the Perseids and the Leonids? The Geminids are debris falling from a passing asteroid.

Yep, a huge chunk of rock hurtling through space has been dropping debris on Earth for hundreds of years. Where is it picking up this debris? Or was it so big in the beginning that it still has the size to spare? I don't know.

What I do know is that the shower was spectacular. I told Chelsea that I was planning on driving south of Cedar City to watch the shower. She opted to go along. We drove out onto the road heading to Kanarraville, pulled off on a side road, parked along the side, then sat on the reclined shoulder to watch. It was a comfortable seat, except for the chill.

There were a lot of falling stars to watch. At least one a minute, judging by all the "oohs" and "ahhs" that we muttered.

I saw one that looked like a huge blue explosion in the sky. Another was a bright streak that lasted several seconds as it fell to the horizon. Even the streak of Milky Way was visible.

It was a good experience. I can't wait for next year.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Don't Have Much to Say...

...I'm kind of tired.

Not just sleepy. Tired. I had an enjoyable semester, but it was also exhausting. The classes I took were very stimulating and I learned a lot.

I have a lot to look forward to and a lot to plan for. Details to come later. Maybe.


I've been addicted to a song the last two days. Can't stop listening to it. It's called "Dis que tu me retiendras" by Garou. I like his voice because he's not a tenor, which means I can actually sing along. This song hangs out at the upper limit of my chest-voice range. I've actually gotten emotional a couple times while listening to the song. Haven't cried. Yet. That may still happen.

I've got a trip planned for the week of Christmas. I'm going to visit my older sister, the one that lives in Springville. I love visiting her and her family. Always have a good time. Wish I could stay for Christmas, but I have to work. Oh, the joys of working at a hotel. Overall, it's a great job, just inconvenient at times. Oh well.

Went and saw Tangled tonight. Not a bad movie. Not my favorite this year, either. But it wasn't bad. Had a lot of funny moments.

Anyway, that's all for now. Wow, this post is all over the place.