Sunday, May 28, 2017

For The Glory 2017

Memorial Day Weekend in Humboldt County is all about the Kinetic Sculpture race that has been happening every year for the past 49 years. Check out last year's post if you want more background on this fantastic race. I don't usually like crowds or big crazy gatherings, but for some reason I love this one so much. This is my third year watching it, and I just can't stop grinning the whole time I'm out there. The joy is simply contagious, much like this first sculpture we saw, the Kinetic Kootie.
The captain of this vessel has been in the race for 32 years! Their motto: We celebrate with humor and terror the thought of katching a kootie."

Here are some of the other truly fantastic and awesome sights we saw. There were many, many more.

Summer of Love 50th Anniversary

The Glorious Galloping Gastropod

Melvin (who has been racing for 36 years!)

Samurai Lawyers

Team Goddess Lightning Bug

Just a view of the journey out of town, I didn't even notice Santa until I looked at the photos!

Sparky (a team devoted to finding homes for dogs and cats)
All of these vehicle/vessels must successfully traverse roads, sand dunes, big tricky drops, and water crossings for 30 miles over three days of travel. They start out here in our little hometown on Saturday and wind up in Ferndale on Monday. I photographed one of the big sculptures in town.

A Cockwork Orange (Captain has been in race 22 years)
Then on the street heading out of town to the dunes.
And then we watched it live streaming on the internet Sunday morning as it made its way into the bay.

I tried to video it straight off my computer screen so you could see what these wild wonderful people go through, "For the Glory!"

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Monday, May 22, 2017

More Halos and Arcs

I walked down the street on Sunday afternoon to check out a garage sale. I was talking to the two women there, one was the neighbor and the other was her friend who had brought stuff to sell. We were chatting about grandkids, toys, earrings, and barrettes. That's when I looked up at the sky. I saw something I had never seen before. It looked like a 22 degree halo, except it wasn't around the sun; it was ghostly white; and it was in the northern sky. I looked at them and said, "I see an atmospheric optic that I have to go photograph. Bye." And I literally took off running home. I try to imagine what it must have looked like for my neighbors to see me, the daily walker, out there trotting to the house. Crazy I tell ya, absolutely crazy. But here's what I saw.
I know this pale arc doesn't look like much. But I've never seen anything like it. Yes, there was a 22 degree halo in the sky, but it was exactly where it was supposed to be, wrapped around the sun with all its lovely colors in the southern sky. It was opposite the pale display.
Oh, and there was a circumhorizon arc below the colorful 22 degree halo as well. You see why I was running home to get the camera. I have no idea what that pale arc was. I am planning on sending the image to Les Cowley at Atmospheric Optics. I'm sure it's some Parhelion something or other, but I truly don't know. I know you know, I love a good atmospheric mystery.
The circumhorizon arc stretched across the southern sky. It was awesome. Definitely the kind of thing you run home for, I think! That, and mysteries.

And then it was all gone.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Almost Wordless Wednesday: Arcata Arcs

It had been a while since I'd seen so many arcs and halos like this. I think the last time was three years ago when we were still living in the foothills. Always a surprising joy to see such a thing. It doesn't last long, but the moment lasts a lifetime. I knocked on the neighbor's door so the kids could come out and take a look. They loved it. It's good to know there will be a new generation of fans of the atmospheric beauty of our skies.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Moon and Dove

I had a lovely birthday, and I thank you for all the good wishes. I did get to talk to my mom and she said, "I'm sorry I forgot your birthday." I said, "You didn't forget, there's still time to say 'happy birthday, Robin' to me, and I'll love it." She said it with the most loving joy in her voice. And then she asked me if it was someone else's birthday as well. She remembered! So I gave her Michael's telephone number, and when she was writing it down and repeating it to me it reminded me of something that happened just the other day. I posted about it on Facebook. Here's the post:
The phone rang. Roger answered it. I heard him say, "You have the wrong number." Then he said it again. Then he said our phone number to the caller. I was thinking, "Yikes, what kind of new phone scam is this?" He hung up and said that it was an old woman looking for her daughter. He felt bad for her. Then the phone rang again. I answered it. it was the old woman, and she really was looking for her daughter and it was not my mother looking for me. The woman told me that her daughter lives in Ohio and repeated the phone number. Yup, our number, but she didn't know that she had to dial the area code. So, I asked her where her daughter lives. She said Cincinnati, or maybe Akron. I looked up both cities and found three area codes. I had her write them down and read them back to me. She was very confused. We did it several times until she had the numbers straight. I wished her good luck and told her to call us again, if it didn't work out. I hope all confused seniors find a cooperative sad daughter at their wrong numbers.
I told my mother the story, and she loved it so much. When she called my brother to wish him a happy birthday she told him that I had just told her such a wonderful story.

Ah love. It can be such a heartbreak sometimes. Full of joy and tears, joy and tears.