So ok, this is the only update *actually* from 8/27. Updates abound!,br>

So ok, I *did* see my first orcas at Lime Kiln! Unfortunately the were so far off that they were tiny in my binocs, and it doesnt feel real. So until I can get a recognizable picture, I dont think I’m going to officially count the experience :). Despite the fact that the whales were far off, I saw a couple really cute ducks, two GBHerons, few harbor seals among the kelp (which is quite nifty) and eating fish, as well as a couple harbor porpoises and possibly some Dall’s porpoises! The Dalls I’m also waiting to make official though, haha.
So lets see… this program is intense! We’re in class by 8:30 am, and doneish around 5pm – and even with the couple hours of breaks in between, I’m exhausted and ready to pass out by 10:30pm! The first drfat of our research proposal is due Monday (yes, tomorrow) and I’m feeling good about mine. I’ve already started jotting down some ideas for how I want to collect data and my experimental design and whatnot. multiple hypothesis, null hyp… etc. Whoohoo! <3!
We’ve been meeting some “real live scientist folk” and of course, that’s been cool. Val’s got some pretty cool stuff going on, with his hydrophones and vocalization anylization programs and such – and they’re about to bring Raven into the mix, which will be nice since I’m a little familiar with it.
One of the absolute highlights so far though has really been the evening with John Stern at the temp home of the Center for Whale Research! John was giving his talk on Mikes and he’s really an authority on the topic. I should start by prefacing with the fact that this evening was in a house up and part of the way back down a mountain. But it looked down into the waters of Haro Strait on the west side and across to Vancouver Island… so it was worth the drive. So, the evening was set in this very quirky eclectic house, full of weathered and renoun scientists like Ken Balcombthis alone made my night. I felt like I’d walked into one of Alexandra Mortons stories about the scientist’s frequent gatherings where they all sat down and discussed their work. John is quite eccentric, and it was wonderful watching his presentation. He got very excited about Random walks and Levy’s in the foraging pattern of Mikes, and I have to admit, despite the mathi-ness, it was quite cool. Before we left I got a great DVD/CD with pics, video, id charts and Vocalizations of the S. Res. I can’t wait to start memorizing and becoming familiar with it all. I really hope we have more evenings like this!
Lets see. other news. We’ve started preping meals for each other, and I had the first night. I made Chichen, broccoli, mushroom, fettucini alfredo, and it was very yummy. One of the best I’ve made in a while. (note to self – buy some basil flavored olive oil when you get home). Friday night Emily and Rena made a veggie stir fry with rice and that was delicious too.
Friday we had our rowing orientation and our swim test – we got to dive into nice wram 54 degree water! It was cold, but luckily not as bad as we’d all ramped it up to be, although you wont find me diving back in anytime soon unless I’m in my 5mil suit. There was a harbor seal actually swiming around about 30yards away, and I was kinda hoping he’d come over, but that’s because I’m too foolish to know better.
Friday night was also a really great time – we went to see a free production of Shakespeares’ Merchant of Venice. Apparently, his most controvercial play due to the antisemtic aspects that resound through it. The troupe decided to act it, in a statement of the current state of the world, and the hate that is so rampant (against all religions, races etc). It was very well acted and I enjoyed it thouroughly, probably moreso than I would have it I had read it prior, because then I would not have likely interpreted it the way I did with their preface.
Lastly, yesterday I spent in town. Donna, Rena and I went food shopping, but first we stopped at a farmers market where I had a absolutely delicious Lavender Limeade. After food shopping Rena and I went to the whale musesum (where I bough more orca vocalizations cds, but this time of the N. res) and then went our seperate ways around town. I think I covered most of it, and I found some really neat stores and some lovely galleries which I’ll have to bring my parents to when they come at the end of the program. I had lunch at a great restraunt called Downriggers, shrimp scampi with cheesy garlic bread and a glass of local white zinfandel. Very good, although the wine was a little strong for my taste – but hey, I’m new to white wine. Bought some stunning yarn after than and walked home soon after – picking blackberries along the way. The island is COVERED with blackberries. I picked at least a pound of them and they were wicked good. it’s only about a 20min walk to the labs, which is very nice. I got home and knit up the skein of yarn I bought – it was brilliant, looked like it had litterally been sheared, spun and dyed it was a great mix of very yarn wooly yarn and soft silky locks… it also required size 35needles, but that let me get two squares out of ~34yrds – and then started working on my proposal. I’ve got to finish that up today and then I supose that’ll get posted on the beam reach page… haha.

Ok, hopefully this will be the last riddiculously long (and random) entry :). Bye all!

1 Comment

  1. Chica

    August 29th, 2006 at 16:45

    Your posts are wonderfully delicious in their descriptions and make me feel like I am there. Thanks for sharing it all. Your thoughts upon leaving are something special

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