January 5, 2003

By Michael Strickland

Very Large Dream

Since I'm on the road, I suppose I should be writing more travel-themed entries. At first, it seemed too obvious, but since I've seen some interesting things in the last week, perhaps it's not such a bad idea.

Yesterday, as I crossed the mountains of western New Mexico, I came over a rise and plunged into a wide valley. There, lined up like white tin soldiers, stood the 27 antennas of the Very Large Array of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. With each dish measuring over 80 feet in diameter and weighing 230 tons, the VLA presented a very impressive sight, even from miles away.

I've wanted to see the VLA since long before the movie "Contact" made it famous. I don't know whether it's a fascination with the site's mission—to seek out the mysteries of the universe—or simply awe of the monumental, Christo-like scale of the array. Whatever it is, standing in the shadows of these gargantuan seekers of knowledge was the realization of a long-awaited dream.


©2003 Michael Strickland ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

What is "The Daily Strick"?

I have long called myself a writer, but too often I don't do what a writer must do daily: write. So you, dear reader, are the beneficiary of my resolution to make a positive change in at least one area of my life. Every single day of this new year, I will write something, anything, and post it here (though some days' writings might be posted late, if I am out of town—such as right now). It is my intention to use this daily exercise to jump-start my too-long-dormant creative energies, and perhaps generate some worthwhile material this year. Hopefully you will find at least an occasional amusement or insight in my daily musings.

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