Friday, June 4, 2010

Friday Fun

Well, I have been wishing for more time in the field and I got my wish.  I will need to learn to be more careful about my wishes.  I didn't have much office work to do today and the fast approaching beginning of summer camp in the youth camp was weighing on me.  My coworker was in a distant area of the park giving an ATV training program for state park staff.  I decided to work with the Rangers today to help make progress on the cabin cleaning.  We started with the Rec Hall in the youth camp first today because a meeting was going to be held there in the evening.  We touched up some last minute details in and around the building and I picked up sticks to prepare for mowing.  I spotted a couple of Tolype Distincta moths mating on a tree nearby.  I was impressed by their furry appearance and the bright white color was a striking contrast to the dark Pine Tree bark.

Once the outside mowing was a the last thing to do at the Rec Hall, an afternoon rain started.  The very dedicated Ranger on the mower stayed on board and finished the job.  I was glad to have that whole area out of the way before lunchtime but I felt bad for the soggy Ranger.  I know how that feels.  After lunch, we had a big group of people working on the cabins.  We finished one half of the youth camp and started on the other half.  It is really a big job to clean those cabins.  The majority of them have four bunk beds and two single beds.  All of the mattresses had to be removed from the building and cleaned.  While that was going on, someone dusted all of the walls and the ceiling and cleaned the ceiling fans.  The beds had to be moved, the floor swept, and the windows cleaned.  There are also a few cabins that are a little larger.  Some have restrooms and separate bedrooms so they are an even bigger chore.  Everyone worked together to make a lot of progress.  It was another hot and sticky day out and we were dodging thunderstorms throughout the day.  We were all hot and tired and wet with sweat and or rain by the end of the day.  I was glad to have a change of pace though.  I miss stumbling across flowers and moths in the field.  We all enjoyed this little Butterfly Pea that was at the bottom of the steps to one of the cabins.

Thought of the Day #20
I couldn't find a common name for the Moths that I saw today.  I was able to locate their Latin name, but I don't have a memory for Latin names and visitors aren't usually interested in that information either.  People are able to retain information if it means something to them.  I have heard it described as a velcro spot on your brain.  I have a velcro spot for natural information but not for dates in history.  Plants and bugs are important to me and information about them stick to my brain, but who-shot-who-and-started-a-war is not important to me and it slides right off.  Common names for plants or insects are more likely to be remembered because they are usually something that a person can relate to.  A Black Racer is a fast, black snake.  A Scarlet Milkweed is a plant with a red flower that produces a milky substance.  Sometimes when I can't find a name for something or in this case, when there is only a Latin name, I might make up my own name.  It will help me remember information about the thing named and create a velcro spot on my brain.  What would you call this moth?  Maybe a Rabbit's Foot Moth or a Black and Grey Fuzzy Foot.  Whatever I call it, I will be able to remember that it feeds on Pine Tree foliage and it will stay with me on my velcro spot.  Try it the next time you have something that you can't identify.  If you give it a descriptive name it may help you to identify it later or at least allow the information you have gained to stay with you.

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