Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Glacier Water--Post 11 for 30dow

I took the California Bar Exam in July of 2007. After the bar exam, most people try to take a vacation, which is called a Bar trip or a Post-Bar trip. For Matthew’s in 2006, we went to Iceland and The Netherlands. (I would say Nederlands, but Matthew gets mad when I try to spell things like the Dutch.) For my trip, we kept things a bit smaller. We went up to Canada. It was amazing. I love winter vacations, so I didn’t mind that my trip was just to Canada. We rented a car and visited all but one of the national parks in the Rockies. We went on 8 hour hikes and had to make noise to ward off bears. One day, we hiked a few hours up a mountain then stopped at a tea house. I discovered a new favorite tea, which is still my favorite black: Golden Monkey. Then we hiked another hour, and there was another tea house. Then we were pretty high up, and we heard an avalanche on the other side of the mountain. There was snow way up high, but it wasn’t completely cold.
This photo is from when we went to visit a receding glacier. It was pretty alarming to see photos of the glacier’s retreat over the past century. We parked in a huge lot with at least a hundred other cars. Then we took a bus from that lot to the next lot closer to the glacier. Then we transferred to a special million-dollar bus that is made in very limited numbers. Apparently, there are something like 10 of them in the world. Nine of them are used at this one glacier in Canada, and the other one is used to transport scientists in Antarctica. The bus is very high off the ground, and the wheels are huge. The bus uses a lot of energy to go, but really, it travels very slowly. All the energy is used to keep it from sliding back off the icy ground. We drove up to the edge of the glacier, which was a fair amount up the mountain. Everyone de-boarded, and we all played at the edge. The glacier is obviously melting, so there is a stream of water pouring down the glacier, collecting in little pools and streaming farther down the mountain.
Though it was freezing, I dipped my hands in the cool water and drank. It was clean and refreshing, and fucking cold! I did it again, though, because it was fun to drink glacier water from a glacier.
It was depressing to see all those people who, like us, had taken a field trip to a glacier. Every glacier I’ve seen in my life (counting those in Iceland and Alaska) are retreating. We have to take field trips to appreciate their beauty, but I doubt many people’s lives change after the visit.
Drill, baby, drill!? Fuck you, McCain.
Not 1,000 words, but I've still got a damn novel to write this month.

1 comment:

s i n c l a i r said...

Wow, that's really an amazing trip. And drinking from a glacier is definitely something that people in the next generation probably won't be able to do at the rate we're going. I've wondered if the increased eco-tourism, going to see endangered rainforests and receding glaciers, is increasing the rate at which they're disappearing by introducing so many people to the environments and increasing the pollution at the sites getting them there? Did they talk about that at all?