Vacation While You Can

My first view of Santorini was from a crowded ferry deck. I had seen pictures of this place but pictures simply could not do this justice. I stood in awestruck silence taking in the scenes while enjoying the salty breeze, which was much welcomed on this scorching day. The towering cliffs of brown hues are peppered with perfectly contrasting white buildings. As I watched the scenery pass me by, I began to wonder what I would be learning in the next three weeks. I started thinking about the volcanic activity that created this island, as well as what would happen to it should there be another eruption. Would everything I see be destroyed? We sail past the old port with its winding switchbacks that make my legs tired just thinking about carrying my luggage. Thankfully our ship keeps moving toward a modern port where an air-conditioned car will be waiting to carry me, and my luggage, to the top of this steep sided caldera. Continue reading “Vacation While You Can”

Missing Pieces

When I woke up on Wednesday morning, I was mentally preparing for a grueling day in the hot Santorini sun. Sweating sunscreen into my eyes while frantically scribbling notes every time Lisa spoke was the usual. Nonetheless it was exciting to spend every day in the field learning new things. Today we would be learning how to draw an outcrop sketch, which shows a section of stratigraphy in painstaking detail. Continue reading “Missing Pieces”

A Rock Solid Idea: Impermeable Cement


On the first day in the field, our group walked down the road from our hotel to Fira Quarry. From the top of the trail, I had a great view of the size of the rock outcrops that extended all the way down into the mined out area, but from the bottom of the quarry I was staring up at 20 meters of Minoan eruption ash and pumice. The wall of rock that stood dauntingly above me made me think about why it stopped where it did and what happened to all the other material that once filled in the area we were standing in, and why it would benefit anyone to mine the pumice at the quarry. Continue reading “A Rock Solid Idea: Impermeable Cement”