Tracking Wildfire Smoke

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When smoke started to descend on White Salmon a few weeks ago, I couldn't help but wonder where it was coming from. There weren't any fires burning nearby, but there were several burning in Washington, Southern Oregon, and Northern California. So which fire was supplying the smoke?

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the rolling rock The rolling rock in the living room.

A few weeks ago Rachael and I rented a house on Bainbridge Island with some old friends from Qatar. Inside the living room we found this giant rock resting on the carpet. I immediately tried to pick it up, but it was far too heavy. It appeared perfectly spherical, as if it were made by a machine. The real story, it turned out, was even more impressive.

The owner of the house told us that she and her husband had long been searching for a large spherical rock and one day they found one. It was on a beach in Alaska, and since they were running a crab fishing boat at the time, they had the ability to bring it home. They used the crab trap lift to move it onto the boat and then contracted with a freight company to transport it back to Washington. She said it weighs about 350 pounds, and a geologist she knows estimated that it probably spent about a million years being rounded off in the bottom of a stream or river. Incredible.

Over the course of the few days we spent there, I alternated using it as a chair and a footrest. I rolled it around a bit and stood on it like a bear at a circus. I told myself that someday, when I own a house, I’ll find for it a giant, rolling rock.

Idara at 21 Months

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At 18 months, I wrote that Idara was beginning to develop opinions. Now, a few months later, she’s learning to express them.

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