Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Countdown

The skies have been blue. Blue in every direction and not a single cloud anywhere to be seen. So, no atmospheric optics. Nothing to draw me out into the sunlight to catch a glimpse of something ephemeral and heart-lifting. We're still mostly staying at home, only venturing out for our weekly shop and daily walk around the neighborhood. Yeah, it's starting to really drive us a little bit crazy, that and the looming election next week have us awake in the night contemplating the possibilities of our future. We have already voted. Submitted our ballots in a real county-approved drop box. I actually checked with the county a few days later just to make sure it was received. It was. Roger's too. Whew.


One of the main streets in our little town was torn up and repaved a few weeks ago. Not sure what kind of pavement mix they used but it glitters and reflects in the sunlight. So without any natural ice crystals in our atmosphere, I have managed to find and be amused and briefly distracted  by the halos on our street. I have no idea how this happens, but I  am glad it does. (Click on the pic and take a look!)

Countdown to election day: A little more than 168 hours; 10,080 minutes; 604,800 seconds. And then, the real count begins. We're hoping for an indisputable landslide. We wait... it's a countdown to the count.

Hope you are all well and getting through these times.

32 comments:

  1. There's something obligatory about that newly painted orange crossing: Here! Cross here! Cross here and at no other place! Cross elsewhere and you will suffer the consequences! Which will be dire!

    Enlarged, the photo is becoming stranger. The glittery section of what looks like tarmac is defined by two shortish lines in parallel with the crossing. They appear to be coloured with a faded version of the crossing's orange tint though it just conceivable they may once have been curiously positioned (straight!) rainbows in which the other colours have faded more quickly.

    The lawn opposite you (The omniscient shadow!) appears to be in poor condition. This is not the US burbs as I knew them. Residents of Mount Lebanon, Pgh, would have been ostracised for maltreating their chewings fescue in that way. My lawn was always in a far worse state but I was forgiven; they liked listening to me because of my accent. When I said I quite liked their accent they drew back, appalled: "But hey, we ain't got no accent." In those days only a tiny percentage of the US population had the wherewithal (ie, a passport) to find out what - if anything - lay beyond that ominous stretch of water out of which the sun sometimes rose at certain times of the day to cast light on Staten Island.

    A girl holding an immense jug of milk and wearing vestigial shorts is watching you intently. So much is unexplained. An ocean and a whole sub-continent lie between us and I'm not sure we share the same planet.

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    1. Roderick-- I noticed the girl, but not when I was taking the photo. Also that lawn, I think the house must be a rental or someone unaccustomed to suburban yard care. There's just so much to learn when one moves into a small town suburbia. I have never flown across that ocean and reached your shores. If I could get on an airplane I would, but my eustachian tube dysfunction does not allow for such upheaval found in high altitude transportation.
      I do think the city went a bit overboard with their crosswalk colors, but soon they will be dulled by time. I hope.

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    2. Hmmmm ... We both have eustachian tube dysfunction. It hasn't been a problem lately. Sometimes it flares up when I am in highly air-conditioned buildings such as our local art museum. Or certain times of the year when I am walking outside. Mysterious (-:

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  2. I would guess they've used ground glass in the mix; they've used it here in the cycleways and it's supposed to make them more hard-wearing. I shall look out for haloes when I'm cycling.

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    1. John-- I think you are right about that. I do recall reading that pavement may be mixed with recycled glass. That would be a very interesting explanation. I hope you find halos there.

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  3. You will and I have a nice rainbow for you on Friday

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    1. Billy-- I am looking forward to Friday's post already!

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  4. Some quartz in the pavement mix? You can also see a hint of a glory around your shadow.

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    1. Mark-- Maybe quartz and maybe a new pavement mixture made with recycled glass. I may have to google around and find out. I'm going to have to check to see if I can see that glory.

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  5. they are repaving a lot of the streets in my little town but nothing so fancy, just plain ole asphalt. still, it's good as they were in terrible condition. I decided after last night debacle that I'm not looking at the news, FB, or Twitter until after the election. I just can't take any more.

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    1. ellen-- I feel the same way about last night's debacle. Today when I see headlines about it, I have to look away. I can't take it anymore.

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  6. Yes , it is getting boring. It doesn't bother me as I'm a bit of a n introvert and loner. However, my wife gets pretty stressed when she is more or less locked down.

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    1. Red-- I'm a bit of an introvert and loner as well, but there's something a little challenging about having this pandemic looming over us with no hint of when it might end.

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  7. You are so observant...as well as your first commentor above! I've been also dealing with detours on some familiar roads, and yet they aren't finished (or even started in some places!)

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    1. Barbara-- I've seen your beautiful photos and find you are quite observant as well!

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  8. I'm beginning to think it is you. They appear in the sky when you take a photo and now in the street?? You really can find them.
    Roderick made me go back and look for the girl. He sure has good eyes.

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    1. Patti-- I love your perspective, made me smile and laugh. Thank you for that.

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  9. I love your pavement halo!

    I'm going to need some extra gin to get through this week.

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    1. Steve-- I am so glad you love this pavement halo. Me too!
      We're hoping we have enough wine to get us through it as well. Oy.

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  10. I'm relieved that your sky is blue again.

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  11. Hmmmm ... glittery pavement. I remember hearing that mica is sometimes a component of pavement and clearly remember the delight I felt when driving on glittery country roads while traveling in Northern California over many years of my life. I've never seen glittery roads in Washington State. I think of it as a California thing (-:

    https://www.icevirtuallibrary.com/doi/abs/10.1680/jtran.15.00013

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    1. am-- I really need to do some research about what the content of this pavement is. It does sparkle, but not the entire road, so it may be that they used a different thing closer to the sidewalk.

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  12. Trying not to be nervous. For some reason this post reminded me of the first time I saw snow, when I came to NYC for college at 18, and somehow it had never occurred to me that snow glittered under the lamplight. Magic happens anywhere, unexpectedly I suppose. May we see beautiful magic a week from today. Let's hold hands and will it to be so.

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    1. 37paddington-- We are trying not to be nervous as well. I am losing sleep over this whole election nightmare. I love your description of seeing glittering snow under lamplight. Yes, magic. Holding your hand, my friend.

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  13. The halo is interesting. I saw a program on TV the other day and they are now using recycled glass as a substitute for sand in some building projects. I wonder if they are using it in roads as well.

    Yes we in Australia are watching the USA election very closely too. I think what happens after the election will be even more interesting. I wish I could invite you to Australia to live but getting residency in this country is very difficult. If our dopey electorate don't wake up very soon our country will slide into worse corruption too. Our current conservative government are not being held to account because parliament is stymied and they keep citing COVID as an excuse. They are doing what they like, spending billions without checks and balances and making terrible decisions that are setting us back. The reckoning for all of these corrupt blue-suited white male bastards can't come soon enough for me. I just hope I get to see it in my lifetime.

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    1. Dr Michelle-- I was wondering the same thing about recycled glass. I haven't been able to find an answer yet.
      I believe that there will ultimately be a reckoning for these bastards. And, yes, I'd like to see it in my lifetime as well. Such selfish narrow-minded bastards.

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  14. The rainbows, in the pavement, are pretty. They are cheery. Regarding the election, I work for a great place. They gave us the day off. The only ones who might have to work are the OnCall people. I plan to get over to the polling place early. I sure hope we can undo what they did four years ago. I hope a good auditing firm audits the money spent, carefully.

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    1. owl-- I'm glad you're going to the polling place early. It was really a hard choice for us to make, to drop our ballots off at the drop box instead of voting in person. We are voting like our lives and our country depend on it.

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    2. Thank you. I am going to vote like that, too!👍

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  15. I tried to comment earlier but apparently did something wrong. I am pretty sure it’s ground glass in the pavement mix. Whatever is doing it needs to be fairly round, like raindrops, to get the rainbow effect. Sand or quartz would have some kind of crystal form with flat faces, and I’m having a hard time figuring out how that would result in a rainbow.

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    1. Mark-- I think I'm going to have to send this photo to Les Cowley at Atmospheric Optics. He may be able to provide some answers.

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