Hello from Olongbuluk

28 August 2008

1940 hrs. I am sitting on top of a hill overlooking the Tuosu Lake, in Qinghai Province just southwest of the town of Delingha. The sun is setting to my right, and I can see the passing clouds turn a bright orange as they pass the sun.

From the snowy peaks and the bone-chilling breeze, we know that autumn has arrived on the Tibetan Plateau; the top of the hill is cold (probably in the mid-50s F), and with each gust of wind my fingers struggle to type on the keyboard.

We drove into the structurally complex area of Olongbuluk with three days of food and fuel. After setting up base camp in a pocket between two hills to shelter us from the wind, we attempted to cook dinner. Our gasoline stove was acting up and the fire would not stay lit. Finally we got enough heat to cook some meat, which we ate with zeal along with some pancakes and tomatoes.

I had been making glue for our first day of fossil prospecting tomorrow. I mixed 50 grams of acryloid crystals with 100 grams of acetone, and diluted the concentrate to make thin consolidant.

It is now after dinner; songs are being played from the car stereo, as the crew members chat around the campsite. Dr. Xie Guangpu is calling me now, he has just found a partially embedded elephant foot bone on the hill adjacent to where I am sitting.

Business is at hand; I must go stabilize our first large fossil and plan for a possible jacketing job tomorrow morning.

From China, with love,



andie said...

congrats on getting there and not dying! random question for capt. carnivore: do hyenas have clavicles? inquiring minds want to know.


Karin said...

Jack! It's great to hear what you're up to. I'd love to hear more about the geology if you've got time to look up from the fossils!

Spencer said...

Sounds like you're having a blast! What part of the foot, Jack?

P.S. Hi Andie! :-P

Spencer said...

P.S. I so have to call you Captain Carnivore now. :-D