New Words:: 358
Total Words:: 34064, or 153 pages
Reason for stopping: field trip!
Mammalian Assistance: A really disgusting face-washing from the mastiff, who has dog breath commensurate with his mass.
Stimulants: Rose congou
Exercise: 8/19/04, walking down to Domino's to collect the pizza and back (about 1.5 miles) 8/20/04, about five miles around the Drowned City of St. Thomas, in 115 degree heat. Desert hiking. blech.
Mail: nolove from Lenox Avenue
Books in progress: Joan Aiken, Castle Barebane
Wow, busy day. kit_kindred, Dylan, and myself drove through the Valley Of Fire and went on walkabout through St. Thomas, which is one of the towns drowned when Lake Mead was filled which has now re-emerged from the lake due to the catastrophic drought the Southwest is still undergoing. We went so I could scout it as a location for One-Eyed Jack. I'm really really glad we did, because St. Thomas looks *nothing* like any of the other Nevada ghost towns I've visited.
We were out about two hours, and eluded both sunburn and heat stroke, but there was a certain amount of heat sickness felt by all parties in the aftermath of the hike. (We had a gallon of water apiece for a five mile round trip plus individual liters, cellphones, and the usual sunblock, hats, etc--plus ice in the cooler in the car, which is really useful for dropping your core temperature fast when it's elevated. And there's nothing quite like the sensation of freezing the front of your neck with handsfulls of ice and feeling the cold creep up the *back* of your neck a few seconds later, after the cooled blood starts back up.)
Desert hiking is not an impulse action; people die out there. And not infrequently, either. But St. Thomas was pretty spiffy; not like anything I'd imagined. And I found all the locations I need for the book.
I may have fried a few brain cells, though; if you notice an IQ drop in the next day or two, that would be why.
Then we went out for dinner, and I put a few bucks in the Megabucks machine as a tithe to the casino gods for our safe return from the desert. And it paid off. No, not the full ten million--or I'd be blogging from Fiji--but it covered dinner.
The casino gods are generous.
And I am so going to bed.