Keeping up with travelblogging hasn’t been easy, mostly thanks to the intense travel itself. When you last heard from me, I was in Louisiana. Since then, I visited LIGO, drove all the way across Texas—an experience that was much more interesting than my friends led me to believe. Now I’m in New Mexico, preparing to land in Arizona by evening. In the meantime, I spent a day at McDonald Observatory, and a few hours at the Apache Point Observatory. On the way to Las Cruces, where I am writing these words, I visited the White Sands National Monument (not to be confused with the missile range, which encompasses it).
Yesterday evening, I had the pleasure of dining with some astronomy graduate students and recent Ph.D.s from New Mexico State University. In my current life, I rarely interact with scientists (except online, of course), and when I do, most often they aren’t astronomers. Though I’m largely happy to be a nomad and a dilettante, there are moments when the tribal affiliation is desirable, and the ability to speak a common language without an accent. Thank you, everyone who came out last night!
It’s been a very busy week, so I’m glad I’ll be stopping soon, and staying in one place a few days. My hope is to have sufficient time and rest to collect my thoughts, so I can get some book-and-blog writing done. (I haven’t been idle on the writing front, it’s just mostly been notes and Ars Technica articles on halo stars and black widow pulsars.) I’ll write you all a postcard from Tucson. Well, not really. A blog post, maybe.