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Monday, April 13, 2009

Take Me Home Country Road

Almost heaven, West Virginia
Blue Ridge mountains
Shenandoah river -
Life is old there
Older than the trees
Younger than the mountains
Growin like a breeze
-John Denver
I have a trip coming up in mid May to go visit a couple of mine sites in West Virginia. We are specifically going to do some training for a new GIS operator in the field, but we are going to be touring a surface mine and an underground mine while we are there so I can get a feel for how the operations work. I am pretty excited about it. The mines themselves are out in the boonies so flying in is a bit of a chore, but I don't mind too much.
I like West Virginia. I spent a week there when I was in grad school for a field camp. We had some interesting times during that week. One of my bunkmates slept with a weird penguin pillow, and made horrible puns throughout the entire trip. The one I remember the most was when we found an arrow in a clear cut area we were counting saplings in. He said "Ah, I know who could solve the mystery of the lost arrow".......wait for it..........wait for it.........."Jessica Fletcher!" I don't know what is sadder the fact that he made the pun, or that I was the only one who got it out of the group that was there. Click here and here for enlightenment if you need it.
I had another bunkmate that kept the fire so hot in the cabin that I was delerious every night and drenched in sweat every morning despite it being March. At one point we were all convinced that the heat had melted a package of plastic cutlery until one of the girls admitted she had left it on the stove while we were cooking. 

The coolest thing that happened on the trip was when we saw and albino deer. We were driving back to camp one evening and on a dirt road when it popped out onto the side of the road and just stood there. I stopped my Jeep and positioned my headlights on it and we all gawked at it for a while until it wandered off. It was really cool and as usual when the really cool stuff happened I didn't have my camera with me. 
Hopefully my next trip will be just as interesting, of course we will be staying in a hotel and not camping out, but I do get to go down into a very deep and very dark hole....wait wasn't West Virginia where all those mine collapses happened a couple of years ago?


Wish me luck, hopefully I will post about the trip when it is over (maybe I will actually remember my camera this time).

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