After three whole days of vacation last week, which were dominated by Annabelle’s new baby, I headed back to school today. I’m taking a course in my Environmental Education program called “Analytical Techniques and Instrumentation.” In the next two weeks, we’re going to learn how to test samples for contaminants, visit New Haven Harbor to take sediments to test for heavy metals, test our own tap water, and visit one of the Thimble Islands off the coast of Branford to study the rocky intertidal ecosystem. In addition, we’re going to set up and maintain a salt water aquarium and monitor for a variety of different factors. I’m excited that I’ll actually get to learn how to do all the chemical testing I’ve been reading so much about, so when I see results published in journals or in the news I’ll be able to understand them better. Today was introductory lab stuff, practice using balances, pH meters, micro-pipets and the spectrophotometer. It was a blast for a science dork like me.
After a busy day, I came home to see my hydrangeas wilting in the first real heat of the summer, even though I watered them this morning. I went around to the back garden, where I left the hose this morning, and when I got there I saw a huge black snake going into a hole in my flower garden! I would estimate that it was five feet long. I screamed for Ed and he killed it, but I have vowed to never weed in that garden again. Now I’m off to do my homework!