June 20, 2001

Hello Everyone:

Yesterday a great wind storm moved into Weardale. Itís still here. Howled all night. Lets see, yesterday was filled with mundane chores. The Guys mucked and timbered the East tunnel. The Entrance to the Black Sheep Pocket from the West tunnel is almost clear. Byron broke out the cement plug yesterday, so they are on their way to dropping the floor there, and giving Byron more room to work. That area will involve mucking by hand rather that with Robbie the Eimco. He doesn't reach, not enough room for track...yet?! Byron trimmed and cleaned up the area at the face of the East tunnel in preparation for blasting and timbering. He will complete the last bits today. I have been told to expect a powder run this afternoon.

Meanwhile on the other end of the Valley things were starting to get windy. I have learned in the past that the weather in the AM is frequently different from the weather in the PM. So I was hoping that the wind would go away. No such luck. Wrote a long email to you all, and did some chores. Finally determined that it wasn't going to die down. So set off to do errands. At the bottom of our hill I saw a really strange thing. There was a dead rabbit (brand new) and a baby rabbit, no bigger than a tea cup. It was nudging at the dead rabbit. I would guess that it was mama. Finally instinct took over and it hopped slowly away. All of this happened not three feet from me. I checked the bushes to make sure the baby was gone, not just hiding. I guess that he grew up quick. I stopped at Fairless for our fire extinguisher..no go. Went to Chemist for First Aid Kits..no go. Went to Phillippa and Jeremy's Office to deliver extra keys and a goodie. Talked to Jeremy for a while. Then to Marie and Scott next door at Gem Craft. Marie and John Land will be joining us at Tucson this coming year for a visit. Had a discussion about prime dates and how far Chicago is from Tucson. They want to go see Sue the dinosaur at the Museum in Chicago as well.

Then I ventured up and over the fells to Consett. The wind was blowing so hard that it was blowing pieces of the clouds across the road. Looked like a convention of ghosts were out for walks. You would see a group of wisps float through and then a clear spot. Really cool to look at. The down side is that with the wind the sheep were hunkering down. Sometimes in the middle of the road. Almost imbedded one on the car. Shopping done, I carried groceries in, and bit the bullet. I can't open the doors to the garage on days like this, so I work in limited light. Byron and Jesse got a portable light for me and that really helps, but still a cave. Its amazing when I think that my garage used to be the house for someone. Anyway cleared a great deal of the table unwrapped a goodly amount of specimens. One in particular stood out. It was just brilliant. It is from the pocket near the front of the East tunnel that Byron is biting to get too. The crystals are not big, but man they stand out. Hands down an A. Want to see what the rest of the area produces. Jeremy was wandering by the garage, so I snagged him. He had been asking "What makes and A?". Now he knows. Both of us were ohing and ahing, when Byron came home soon afterwards. Was a nice way to wind up the day. Today who knows???

Cheers, Byron and Jonina

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