Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Of Wolves and Rocks (Part 2)

Originally, Allie and I's trip to Colorado Springs was meant to include an extra evening from the day before our adventure at the Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center.  With the world crisis underway, however, we just decided to drive down a bit later on Thursday.  Our time at the Center was scheduled for Friday morning.  This left Friday afternoon for exploring other local attractions.

We explored the Garden of the Gods. The drive around the park was fairly straightforward.  We stopped of at the Kissing Camels, Siamese Twins and Balanced Rock.

Kissing Camels
Siamese Twins
Balanced Rock
Afterwards we found a good Mexican restaurant that was on the way back to Colorado Springs, called Crystal Park Cantina.  We ordered by phone and then went to pick up our takeout order.  We were pleasantly surprized by our dishes when we ate them after we got back to our hotel.  We might return to this location next time we are in the area.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Of Wolves and Rocks (Part 1)

Allie and I travelled to the Colorado Springs area this weekend to explore the area and meet some wildlife at Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center.  Our travel itinerary was made before the current world crisis.  As such, many plans were changed or cancelled.  In Colorado, there are state restrictions, which are being phased out right now.  However, there's little consistency from one region to another since  individual cities have set their own rules.  So, we didn't know for sure if our visit to the Center was even going to happen until a week prior.  We had to change our hotel and cancel all restaurant reservations.  It was also fruitless to try to explore Colorado Springs downtown.

Fortunately, the Center was able to open as of May 1.  So, in addition to some everyday strict clothing requirements, the Center implemented proper face mask and social distancing for guests and staff.  

We had the Ultimate Alpha package.  This includes meeting two pairs of wolves and also foxes, and 50 photos of the interactions.  My only critique of our experience is that the quality of photography was lacking, as you'll see below. If you compare our photos with what is presented on the website, there's a world of difference.  I did touch up the photos to fix as much of the issues as possible.

We first visited the foxes.  The foxes were rambunctious.  They actually kinda reminded me of racoons. While we were in their enclosure, there was no question that Rhett and Scarlett viewed us as the source of their kibble, and nothing more.


Scarlett

Rhett

Rhett and Scarlett

Navi and Tala are the pair of wolves that we next met.  I don't know if the photos truly capture the size of Navi.  When you are face to face with him, looking at him in the eyes, you get a real sense of the power and grace embodied by these awesome canids.  

Being greeted by Tala and Navi

We were able to start a pack howl. 
It wasn't hard.  They live for howling.

Navi and Tala

Finally, we met with Orenda and Isha. 

Orenda posing
  
A wolf only sits when it wants, and the treats only provide passive enticement.  Orenda only half sits for the promise of a kibble.

Orenda kinda sits for kibble.

Tala greeted Allie at first, but was generally aloof.  She knows she's beautiful and has little time for us humans.  (Actually, she did enjoyably interact with us for a time, but none of the photos are well-posed.)

The Deep Dark by Max Tobin (review)

The Deep DarkThe Deep Dark by Max Tobin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What happens when you live in a dystopia world with layers like an onion? The results are institutionalized death, pain and mayhem where life is miserable while each person fulfills their assigned roles. The secret truth is too unbelievable to be true, or so one would think.

Harton is the POV character. Harton moves through the story at a good pace. The story is revealed through character driven action. Some exposition is used to progress the story at certain points, but not overly done. The read is enjoyable and quick. This book does serve as a critique of certain aspects of our modern world by exploring a possible result of such.

This book uses method of writing to recall dreams which is a little distracting, but overall the story is linear as Harton makes discoveries and comes to certain realizations. Other than that, this is fairly traditional Sci-Fi in tone, plot and structure.

View all my Goodreads reviews

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Tried to make a sleepy fishing village with Sunset Harbor

I tried to make a sleepy fishing village with Cities:Skylines Sunset Harbor DLC.  Well, it's a fishing village, but not sure if it's sleepy.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Orbital Dance - Inspired by adventures in Elite Dangerous

Flying around planets and moons is fun in Elite Dangerous.  This music is inspired by exploring worlds in star systems playing Elite Dangerous.



Other ED inspired music:
Explorer's Path
Cloud View
Orbital Dance

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

One soulful evening, I found myself looking up to the sky from a small moon

While playing Elite Dangerous, I was in my SRV on a small moon in a dimly lit star system at a geologically active site.  I looked up to see the parent planet and the space around me filled with an eerie sauna like steam bath.  The experience inspired this work.  While short, the tune is very loopable.




Other ED inspired music:
Explorer's Path
Cloud View
Orbital Dance