Saturday, June 21, 2014

Well, THAT'S done

Went out to the field this morning a bit before 8.

Pulled up to my colleague's land (he owns something like a quarter section, and far off in the northeast corner, he and his wife have their house). There was a chain across the drive in.

Wait, what? I knew they were out of town but I guess I didn't realize it was for an extended period (in the past, when they've left for weekends and they know I'm heading out to do research, the drive has been open).

I hesitated. I wondered, is it okay for me to go on his land? Is it even safe for me to leave my car parked here kind of at the end of the road?

He had, in the past, given me "blanket permission" to go on and do research, I didn't even have to tell him I was coming. So I figured it was probably okay. (I did briefly wonder if it was safe: most of the time, one of them is home and if I got injured or had a big problem they would help. Also there's a boxer dog at one of the houses across the street that seems very territorial, and while it hasn't come up onto his land, I figure there's a first time for everything. (I'm very wary of dogs I don't know. I know boxers are generally a friendly breed, but there can always be that dog that has been socialized by its owner not to be friendly).

But in the end, I thought, "You won't have time to easily get out here again soon," so I did it.

I'm glad I did.

(Well, maybe not a JAR of dirt, a bag - or rather, 20 bags of soil - but it's done).

I will have to refigure the field lab for Monday; we were going to go to his land and I don't want to take students on his land when he's not in town. (Also there's nowhere safe to park the hugacious university van). I guess we'll do the tree sampling lab instead, while I buy myself some time to find out if I can either get in touch with him or find a good alternative site.

I will also say that while I am not an arachnophobe in any way, shape, or form, there were wolf spiders out there big enough to make me go NOPENOPENOPE when I got close to one. I know wolf spiders are pretty benign and I've even captured and rehomed ones that have managed to blunder into my house....but a spider with a 3" to 4" body span, out in the field.....yeah, that's a NOPE.

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