Last Wednesday Joe gave his public thesis defense and it went super well! He was calm and thorough, and wowed the audience with his superior knowledge of peregrine falcons. It helps that he's real smart; in fact, compared to him most people have the IQ of a carrot. I am incredibly proud of all the hard work and dedication he gave to this project, and would like to think that my dinners had more to do with his success than they actually did. The hardest part is over and now we can play! First item of business, go on a hike:
We chose La Madre (the peak behind Joe's head) in Red Rock. Admittedly, Red Rock is a place that normally receives nothing but scorn from me. It's so full of people, and certainly isn't the only place in our fine valley that has red sandstone, it's just the most famous. However, there is something stunning and unique about that place, and it really hit home today. The hike was great, although the snow and slick rock prevented us from getting to the peak, it was no matter because of all the other great happenings along the way. The first thing we did was admire the tinajas and an old dam that was built near them. Then, fascination ensued as we speculated what some of these pictographs meant to the tribe that used to live there:
Next time you're driving on 215 near Flamingo, notice the engravings along the underpass. Those are copied directly from some of the pictographs at Red Rock.
As we worked our way slowly up the mountain, watching our every deliberate step so that I didn't fall down and blame Joe, a peregrine killed a bird and chucked it at our heads. What do you know about that? It happened really really fast. The peregrine came from behind us and all we heard was the ferocity of her wings in the wind as she got closer. At that noise Joe and I both turned to look and we saw a dark round object coming at us while the startled peregrine flew away without her prey. That poor dead bird probably never even knew what happened, one minute it was alive, then quite dead. Of course, there’s no reason not to hold and take many pictures of a dead bird. And so we did.
It was a great day for a hike!