|Pop Culture Gadabout|
Thursday, June 11, 2009 |
( 6/11/2009 04:10:00 PM ) Bill S.
ADVENTURES IN JOURNALISM: Yesterday, as preparation for a story on the Mt. Graham International Observatory Tours, Becky and I visited Eastern Arizona College's Discovery Park campus and considerably smaller Gov Aker Observatory that's located in the middle of the desert wildlife habitat. At one point during the interview, Harry Swanson, the Park Campus' Dean, offered to take me up to see the telescope, and, naturally, I wanted to do so.
As we got to the steps, he told me he needed to go first. "There's a vent near the bottom of the steps, and rattlesnakes get in," he explained. Sometimes, he continued, you can get surprised by one on the steps. "If I fall back, I want you to catch me," he joked, though, happily, we weren't given the opportunity to test my capacity as a back-up since we made it all the way to the top without incident. Last summer, he said, they had something like 33 rattlers show up at the observatory over the course of the summer.
After hearing that, seeing the telescope itself was rather anticlimactic.