Wednesday, March 12, 2008


We are amazed at the contrails we view from our rural out-of-the-way setting in northeast Missouri. The above image is not always the case, but did happen today. This little blog entry is not really about contrails (you can read more about that if you want) but rather about the thoughts they trigger for us:

(1) We wonder about the pollutants we humans are putting into the air. What contribution do such things make to global warming? What of these are we sending ahead for future generations?

(2) Believe me, the 3 of us (especially Melanie and I) have done our fair share of traveling and hope to travel selectively in the future. I checked out my Carbon Footprint for just one trip which I hope to make: Kansas City to Croatia (the land of my ancestors on my Father's side) and return. The Carbon Footprint site defines "carbon footprint" as a measure of the impact our activities have on the amount of greenhouse gases we produce. My little trip would produce 1.872 tons of CO2. Yes, you read it right. That's tons. And that doesn't count getting to Kansas City and return, going from Venice (which is the closest I could come on this site) to Croatia, or doing anything else after I get there. Yikes! That's a lot to think about as I look up from the ground. (I don't think I will be sending packages overnight delivery any time soon. I did quit this some time ago.)

(3) The seemingly random pattern of contrails makes me wonder if we humans really know where we are going. Now that is something else to ponder.

(4) This morning , Richard and I were standing outside and looking at the contrails. I asked him which contrail he would like to follow. He pointed up and said: "That one." It was a flock of Snow Geese making their way along their spring journey. We smiled.

(5) Clearly, my family and I have some more work to do on this issue.

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