Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Hills Are Burning

My home city is Los Angeles, CA and I am not at all happy about the fire that is going on in the Angeles National Forest. As I post this, 21,000 acres have burned and thousands of homes are threatened. I could rant about the wisdom (or lack of it) in building homes on the hillsides, but I won't. I could rant about the lack of a controlled burn program in the Angeles National Forest (ANF), but I won't.

Mt. Wilson is a mountain in the ANF at an elevation of 5,700 ft. From the top, you can see most of the Los Angeles metropolitan area to the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island. The Mt. Wilson Observatory has a 150 ft. solar tower with a TowerCam. The link is here. The fire is getting very close to Mt. Wilson, so I'm not sure how much longer this TowerCam will be operational. It is kind of interesting to look at.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

This Is My World

I was working on my job application today in the building where our program study room is located. I had to take a break, so I went outside and took this picture. This is what it looked like outside the back door of the building. It was just starting to drizzle.

Then I had to go back inside and continue on with the application. This is what I had to look at.

I guess I wasn't standing straight.

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Pressure Is On

The summer semester is over and I have only one more semester to go before I graduate. So the rush to get everything done in time has begun. I have to complete registration for the fall, which involves filling out paperwork for internships, filling out a degree application, turning in my final program of study, making sure my graduate records are accurate, turning in my paperwork for the remaining competency finals, and studying for the finals. During the fall semester, I will also be presenting at 2 seminars, and taking 3 internships which total to 40 hours of work per week. How I am going to manage all this, I do not know.

To add to everything, I have to look for a job. I have already been looking and just saw tonight that a position with my favorite government agency has come open. It is located in my home state! It is in a city that is about 115 miles from my home city. Best of all, the pay is very good!!! I have to apply. The deadline to apply is Monday, Aug. 17. So I have one week and I'm sure it will be a very hectic one for me. These particular positions do not come open very often. The scientists that occupy these positions are so happy in them, that they stay until they are way past retirement age. So the only time this type of position comes up is when someone finally retires. The competition is fierce and there is no guarantee that I will even get to the interview stage.

I have to wonder whether it is wise for me to pursue this position when I have so much that has to be accomplished to graduate in December. But like I mentioned above, these positions do not come open very often and I don't know when another one will open up. Another reason in favor of applying now is that several faculty at the university have told me that I needed to be looking for this position title in my government job searches, because I am very skilled in this particular area. Or so they say. I don't quite know how that happened. I did not try to be skilled in that area, it just came naturally, I guess.

So, a busy week ahead for me here, but I just don't think I can pass up the opportunity to apply.