East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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Adventure by Proxy

I’ll write down a few sparse ruminations, if you don’t mind.
This post is tagged Armchair Adventuring, and this post is at the core if that tag.

You see, I just stumbled on a piece by a guy that recently discovered the joys of white-water rafting.
You know, that sport that consists in paddling down rapids in a big inflatable dinghy.
The guy I was reading really loves that stuff.


He’s pretty sure this is his sport.
He’d spend hours watching videos of people rafting.
Yes, he’s considering it a spectator sport.
Give thanks to the inventor of the GoPro camera.

The thing got me thinking along two very different lines. Continue reading

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Keep it safe, and keep on reading

The-Dinosaur-Project-9780921912460I’m currently reading Wayne Grady’s The Dinosaur Project, about the joint Canada-China dinosaur-digging expedition in the Gobi Desert, in 1985.
Great stuff, an excellent account of science, research and adventure.
Good science writing.

And the sort of book that rises a few eyebrows when somebody asks you “And what are you reading?”
The point being, why should anyone read such stuff.

I get off the hook easily – I’m a paleontologist, so it’s work-related.
But I was discussing last night with a friend about this thing – that anything out of the ordinary gets you weird looks. Continue reading

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Roy Chapman Andrews and the Dinosaurs of Mongolia

It’s Sunday, let’s go back in time.
Here’s some footage from the Roy Chapman Andrews expeditions in Mongolia and the Taklamakan/Gobi desert in 1913.