Out of the cave

January 28, 2008

The caving trip was a lot of fun, though I picked up quite a few things that should serve us well next year, namely: bring an air mattress or two. The new foam pads were OK, but not great. I shudder to think of how bad it could have been without them. We camped out on the cave floor, along one side of a long gallery. Noise, comfort and lightwise, it was comparable to sleeping in a parking garage. We did two tours – a walking tour which is offered to everyone who shows up during their normal operating hours, and a second spelunking-type tour that had the adults squeezing through some very narrow passages on our stomachs. The kids, of course, zipped right through. The dads (and a few moms)…not so much. It was slow going in some parts, and especially insane when the line got backed up exactly as I got into some weird position for negotiating a tight turn. But it was a lot of fun, and everyone had a great time. I took some pictures, and really, really promise to post them soon. I get lazy about pictures because we use Picasa to manage them locally, but host them on Flickr. As Picasa and Flickr are locked in mortal combat, there isn’t an easy way to upload pictures. There is a nifty plugin, but it’s not working for the most recent version of Picasa. Yet. Or maybe I’ll just move them all to a Google web album instead. Meh.

Anyway, it got me (temporarily) interested in caving. The bits about packing out waste (all waste) turned me off a little. Garbage is one thing. Schlepping around a freezer bag full of, uh, poop is something else entirely. Maybe some other time. Next stop: the pinewood derby.

Our tank has finished cycling, with both nitrite and ammonia levels at 0. Huzzah! I’ll probably start adding back fish to replace the ones we lost during the process, and the plants are already needing to be pruned down a little.

Tulip had a nice little party the other night, with cupcakes, ice cream and some new books to read. Everyone else (including your scribe) is battling some annoying little chest-tickling cough. The weather has warmed up here for a little while, giving us all a brief taste of spring. As I wrote the other day, it really can’t come fast enough for us.

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