I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Friday, September 30, 2022

Urban poetry

The brutal storm surges flowing through the Florida streets this week reminded me of these gutters in San José. There are steps and ramps—usually— for crossing them, but it's one more thing that made navigating San José challenging.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Astronomy Tuesday

Twitter user the moon's wife (@bookishseawife) posted this last week: 
the appalachian mountains are older than saturn’s rings. the appalachian mountains are older than dinosaurs. the appalachian mountains are older than trees. the appalachian mountains are literally older than BONES. the appalachian mountains should be regarded with pure terror.

I am so accustomed to thinking of the universe as unimaginably large and unimaginably old that I sometimes lose sight of the how old and weird our Earth is.

And though when I first read this I thought, “Well, that can't be right,” the Appalachians (which are about 480 million years old) are in fact older than the rings of Saturn. The rings were long thought to be the same age as the planets (about 4.5 billion years old), but the data collected by Cassini showed that they are actually only about 100 million years old.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Sunday bird blogging

It was not a good week, culminating in an extended internet outage Friday when I really needed to be able to upload, download, search and print to prep for my classes yesterday.

So this beautiful female American kestrel hanging out on an antenna across the yard made me smile when I really needed it.

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Saturday reflections

Reflections in the window of a cafe on East 23rd Street in June.

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Astronomy Tuesday

I don't think I've ever seen the Great Lacerta Nebula before. But it is spectacular, and I'm just going to let the image speak for itself.

Image Credit and Copyright: Jarmo Ruuth, Telescope Live

Monday, September 19, 2022

Ruinas de Ujarrás

Another ruined church. This one, dating from the late 17th century, is all that is left of the village of Ujarrás, which was abandoned after a flood in 1833. The land surrounding the ruins is now a park.

Sunday, September 18, 2022


I didn't post a reflection shot yesterday, so here's something appropriate: two chairs in the cafeteria at school.

Teaching yesterday went well, but I was so tired last night I couldn't even read. The overhead projector crapped out in my Level 1 Speaking and Listening class, and I had 50 slides of pictures to use for prompts. (I improvised by turning the computer monitor around and having the students move closer.)

And I sent a text to one of my fellow teachers asking which room she was in. Or I meant to—I dictated the text because I was in a hurry, and somehow What room are you in went through as Wow marihuana.

But the students are lovely and eager to learn.

Sunday bird blogging

A brown jay in Monteverde.

Friday, September 16, 2022

Urban poetry

I love the tropical colors on these buildings on my street in San José.

I'm teaching the first classes in my practicum tomorrow and I'm still cobbling together lesson plans and activities. Last night I dreamed that I tested positive for Covid and couldn't teach. I already knew that I was stressed out; having my brain suggest that coming down with Covid might be a lucky break just confirmed it.

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Astronomy Tuesday

I am always fascinated by images of the sun, all the detail that's hidden by the overwhelming brightness.

This image shows a filament—a formation of hot gas held aloft by the sun's magnetic field—that appeared at the beginning of September. This filament was approximately 350,000 kilometers long; filaments usually last for a few days before collapsing back into the sun.

Image Credit and Copyright: Alan Friedman (Averted Imagination)

Monday, September 12, 2022

Garden break

Here's a pastoral interlude: light on the leaves in my garden in San José.

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Sunday bird blogging

I took this picture of a great kiskadee in Monteverde, but they were also one of the more common birds in San José and throughout the central valley in Costa Rica.

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