The end of week three signaled the shift into high gear or perhaps “low gear” because time doesn’t pass so quickly. The databases have been selected, the data has been pulled from papers, additional numbers have been received from researchers in several countries, and now I’m faced with making sense of it all. I know, it sounds pretty boring, and at times it can be. Looking at 4000 rows of data, debating how to weigh a lack or surplus of information from one site in order to compare it to another, figuring out how to make it all useful…it’s particularly challenging. But before we can begin teasing out exciting new information, the data mining stage is crucial. Outside the mind-numbing, we had a number of other activities going on this week: we had a productive and clarifying conference call with the lead developer of one of the models we will be working with, the Natural Capital Project’s inVEST Blue Carbon model. In addition, the grad/postdoc students at the EPA hosted an extremely helpful resume/CV workshop…it’s been 4 years since I changed the format of my CV and it definitely needed a refresh.
This past weekend was also the Fourth of July and I can’t think of any better way to celebrate America than going out bright and early to explore Caper Perpetua, part of a federally protected National Forest. It’s a beautiful manifestation of one of the world’s greatest land conservation schemes–the US National Forest System, which is truly something all Americans should be proud of. While there, I finally satisfied one of my goals coming out to Oregon: tide-pooling on the Pacific coast.