Friday, August 30, 2019

Day 3536

Traveling is always more enjoyable than what comes afterwards. Today we unpacked, did a lot of laundry, and resumed our regular routines. I went to the post office and got mail service restored. There wasn't as much accumulated mail as I expected. What was missing was the junk that the mail carrier just stuffs in every mailbox along with the real mail. I wish you didn't need to go on a trip to avoid this clutter.

It was noticeably cooler today. It felt like we got the benefit of a little cold front that proceeded this afternoon's rain. My morning walk was hot and humid as I expected, but when I walked again after the rain clouds passed through town, it felt like Fall. The temperature was still almost 80 degrees, but when you're used to to 102, 80 degrees feels wonderful. The only downside to the cooling rain was that the pumps on the roof weren't working, so I'm going to have to go up on the roof tomorrow and sweep the standing water away.

I'm going to have to rethink my Sky & Telescope article. This is an astronomy magazine and since I didn't actually look through any telescopes while I was at McDonald Observatory, they might not be as interested in what I have to say. You never know though. Weather is always part of any story about astronomy. Even though it rained, I'm still going to write an article and submit it to the magazine. The trip was still quite interesting to me. Maybe it will be interesting to others as well.

One interesting bit of trivia I learned during our trip was that Hotel Limpia where we stayed in Fort Davis was also home base for the first astronomers while the observatory was being built during the early 1930's. The historic hotel has been refurbished but is essentially unchanged. We might have stayed in the same room as Otto Struve or other early luminaries in the world of astronomy.

There was another opportunity to attend a NASA event in my inbox this morning. This wasn't a launch. It was a chance to go behind the scenes with NASA at this year's International Astronautical Congress in Washington DC and meet with scientists, experts and astronauts. Sounds interesting, but I can't afford to spend five days attending a high end Washington DC convention. These are the type of things you usually do on an expense account. Retirement is kind of weird. You have all the time in the world, but business travel is a thing of the past. Everything you do is on your own dime. These days I've got to finish paying for one trip before I can start thinking about another.

I'm definitely going to be thinking about other trips. Travel is a lot more interesting than walking around the lake and counting ducks. Don't get me wrong. I like the local ducks, but there are other birds in the sky. I'll leave you with a picture of one of the Fort Davis hummingbirds. Tomorrow it's back to pictures of half dead Texas flowers.

Tessa is today's Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day