Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Mystery at Taughannock Falls

We went up to Ithaca this past Sunday. While we were there we hiked up to Taughannok falls which were really cool. The most interesting thing however were the strange pillars of rocks that we found all along the riverbed leading up to the falls for about 200 yards beneath the steep canyon walls. They were these obviously human made structures of stones stacked on top of each other. Some were simple piles of pebbles, others were small master pieces of engineering, rising nearly eight feet in the air with elaborate supports and buttresses. I have to honestly say that standing there in the deep gorge, with the waterfall before us with all of those hundreds (at least hundreds) of pillars each one of which had been made by someone, had to have been one the most magical things I'd ever seen. My family and I and some other people who had walked up the canyon soon set about building our own little obelisks, with some consternation as it seemed that so many towers had been built that there was actually little room, or material left, but we managed eventually.
Now, here is the really strange part, we had assumed that these towers were an integral part of the Taughannok experience, and that by adding our own we were simply continuing a tradition that had gone on for years, but as we came up to the observation area, my Mom began talking with another woman, a frequent, long time patron of the park, and, low and behold, just six weeks before, none of this had been there! That's right, it had only been a short time since the very first pillars appeared. Stranger still, it appears to be a complete mystery as to who is responsible for starting it. A college frat prank? A Buddhist blessing? Who knows? Here are some pictures. I'd like to hear all of your opinions on what they could be!

- Andrew

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Farm Science Review (Day 1)

"Ohio has the flavor of a water chestnut; it's not to crazy and it's not the best." - Matt Thiessen

Well, I guess living there himself, he would know, but it hasn't been so bad so far, our first day hear at the Farm Science Review went really well.

Above (you've probably seen them by now) are my pictures from the today;
The first one is my dad and the "Dudes" from Greenwood Tech;  the next four are of them and Michael Kimbal in the booth interacting with customers; the last two are of my brother and sisters after seven hours in that back seat.

- Andrew

Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Pennsylvania Grand Canyon

looking up from inside

Climbing up four mile creek (that runs down the side of the canyon)

The Bontegers admiring the view.

The view from the observation area

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

The Amish

I got my Macbook! And it's really sweet! It's so nice and sleek and has all the stuff that I used to have to plug into our computer built right into it, and it has lots of cool software on it. But the thing I am most thankful for is the fact that it works, without taking hours!

It will be nice having it (other than for the obvious reason that I'll be going to college in about four months) for business, because I'll be able to keep all my contacts and everything on it. Like this weekend this guy called and no one was at the office (obviously) so it rang through to our house and I took it. It was a guy who wanted to buy some insulation and couldn't seem to figure out why our "customer service department" wasn't picking up. So after I explained something to the effect of that they don't work on holidays or weekends, and this was both, I gave him some info about the product he wanted and he told me he wanted to place a big order, so I was really exited and didn't care that he had called in on Labor Day weekend. But unfortunetly, since everyone was off, I couldn't have them close the sale. So I had to just take his contact info and promise to call him back. Now, I went out and told my Dad, about it and he was happy and I was happy, and I didn't even think about the piece of paper with the contact info on it, which I carelessly left on the counter. Not only did I leave it but it was the only piece I could find, which happened to have some other stuff written on it that looked like trash, so when my Mom cleaned for company coming over (we had some Amish people staying at our house - long story) she through it away.

But yes, Amish people visited us over th weekend. Mr. Bontreger is a dealer for my Dad, and, through a series of events Dad invited him to come visit us with his whole family. Now, I must confess, I felt a little uneasy about the whole situation in the begining, but soon after they arrived I reallized that they were very nice, and just because they don't drive or watch TV didn't mean that they weren't fun people who we could get along with like just about anyone (and perhaps better than many) We had some other freinds over to meet them, and took them to the Grand Canyon (Pennsylvania version).

We got a sofa today, for our room that hasn't had any furniture in it for about six months (wich was annoying, because it was one of our main rooms) and since we were in the area (Selingsgrove) so we picked it up. Now, we had actually bought this a long time ago, but shipping is so expensive that we decided that we would have to pick it up ourselves. This seemed like a good idea, since we tended to be in our near Selingsgrove about twice a month. Unfortunetly, our buying the sofa directly preceeded a long period of our not being in Selingsgrove. So it's been sitting in a warehouse down there for a long time. But, we finally did it, and didn't have to have it shipped. So I guess it worked our well : )

We ate a BJ's BQ, which is a really fun place, and I ate a lot!

- andrew