While in Oregon, we took a day trip to Washington to meet my brother and his wife.
Since Brown-Eyed Boy has taken on a sudden interest in volcanoes, we decided to meet at Mount St. Helens.
I visited Mount St. Helens with my family as a kid. I remember being afraid to get out of the car, sure the volcano was going to erupt again.
I was much less paranoid this time.
In fact, this time, visiting Mount St. Helens sparked an obsession in me. I could have stayed at the Johnston Ridge Observatory for hours, reading the stories of survival and destruction, listening to the rangers describe the science behind volcanoes, admiring the stark but beautiful landscape, still making a comeback after being obliterated thirty-four years ago.
I kind of wish I'd studied volcanology in school. Instead of, you know, English.
When we got back to Arizona I took the kids to the library and loaded up on volcano books. Children's books, because apparently adults aren't interested in that sort of thing.
Brown-Eyed Boy likes looking at the pictures, but I stayed up reading them late into the night, fascinated.
I can now tell you all about volcanic rocks, different types of lava, and the difference between shield cones, cinder cones, and composite cones. I can tell you stories about Mont Pelee, Lake Nyos, Paricutin, and dozens of other volcanoes.
I think it's safe to say I'm way more interested in volcanoes now than Brown-Eyed Boy.
Although he did tell us, while at the observatory, "I think I want to be a firefighter, a race car driver, and a scientist, so I can go inside volcanoes."
Maybe I'll have to live my lost dream of being a volcanologist through my son.
Oh, and while walking around the marsh near the visitor's center, we learned this interesting little tidbit of information:
Sometimes nature is just too awesome for words.
The Brown-Eyed Girl