one day at a time…
Saturday, 27 September 2003

Pix Of The Day: Lake District Grey Eminences
CREDITS: © Tony Richards/LakelandCAM.co.uk
When clicked, thumbnails popup enlarged versions of the images.

Herdwick Sheep © Tony RichardsWe were astounded to discover that this weblog makes only one brief and passing reference to John Peel, about whom the famous hunting song 'D'Ye Ken John Peel' was written. Peel was a denizen of the northwestern corner of the English Lake District in our own homeland. His fame has spread out of all proportion to his real importance as an historical figure, and he has his boozing buddy, John Woodcock Graves who wrote the song, to thank for that fame.

We will try to make amends for our shortcoming with a dedicated article, after we have had time to recover from the shock of our neglect, and have had time to gather some research and provide our readers with interesting web resources.

Meanwhile, to our chagrin, we found the most entertaining piece about Peel on an Australian web site, albeit one published on a South African web server! References to Eric Shackle, and his 'World's First Multi-National eBook', have appeared here before, but here is a great yarn, connecting Clarissa Dickson Wright (she of the 'Two Fat Ladies' television cookery series), and Van Diemen's Land (now Tasmania)… OH! and not to forget John Peel himself, of course.

After you have read that piece, you will understand why today we have featured a gray sheep, one of the thousands of the Herdwick breed that roam the fells of Lakeland. Tomorrow we will explore the implications of being 'dyed in the wool'.

Pix of the Day: Mt. Everest from Space - Fri, 27 Sep 2002

Mt. Everest from Space © Dr. Jay AptDr. Jay Apt has walked in space! It happened when Jay flew as a member of the crew of the space Shuttle Atlantis on the STS-37 mission, which launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida on April 5 1991. During the mission, the crew deployed the Gamma Ray Observatory to study the universe by observing the most energetic form of radiation. Jay and crewmate Jerry Ross performed an unscheduled space walk during which they manually deployed the observatory's large radio antenna when remotely controlled motors failed to do so. The following day they did another space walk, scheduled this time, to perform research.

This stunning picture comes from Jay's OrbitExperience web site, which has two photo galleries with pictures of the earth taken from space, and much more besides. The picture of Mt. Everest makes it easy to see why the Nepalese call it 'Sagarmatha' (a Sanskrit word meaning "Abode of Snow'), and the Tibetans call it 'Qomolangma' (Chomolangma meaning 'Goddess-Mother'). If you find these images as awe inspiring as I do then you may want to read how Jay and others reviewed all 286,000 NASA photographs taken over a 30 year period, then selected the most spectacular 156 for a book entitled 'Orbit: NASA Astronauts Photograph the Earth'. Pictures in the book are scanned and corrected from the originals, so the quality is superb.

Dr. Apt's biography reads like the fulfillment of a young boy's dreams: four space missions with 35 days in space; a visit to the Russian Mir space station; recipient of NASA's highest medal; former museum director; and professor at Carnegie Mellon University. He now divides his time between lecturing and his work as Managing Director and Chief Technology Officer of iNetworks LLC, a venture capital firm.

For those further interested in Mt. Everest PBS/Nova has an interesting web site, which includes the Mallory find. For a more first hand experience of trekking in the Himalayas, Gordon Cook (as part of 'The Cook Report on the Internet') has an interesting selection of maps and pictures. Today's feature picture is also available at a higher resolution, suitable for viewing on large monitors. Dr. Apt has also kindly contributed another picture for this article, Mt. Everest taken at a later date from the international space station. That picture will be featured tomorrow.

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Jules Laforgue (1860-1887)
"Ah! que la vie est quotidienne."
Oh, what a day-to-day business life is.
'Complainte sur certains ennuis' (1885)