Lamont Weekly Report, December 14, 2007

If I account for the fact that my youngest daughter was born at an inconvenient time, and then another year I was at sea, then this is the 30th AGU meeting in San Francisco that I have attended since I came to the US in 1974. It is rather different today, no longer held in the Jack Tar Hotel and the Holiday Inn up on Van Ness – and no longer can one rely upon meeting everyone who is anybody playing darts in the Edinboro Castle.

But again it was a great meeting, and it was good to hear Lamont’s name so often quoted and to see so many of our folks giving talks and posters. The Lamont party on Tuesday night was as always a great success – absolutely packed despite competing with other Town Meetings (as well as the Scripps reception).

For me most of the week was a blur of formal and semiformal meetings, the former including a difficult meeting of the Langseth oversight committee, a Board of Governors meeting for IODP Management International (also difficult but for different reasons!), as well as a very enjoyable lunch in the Stanford University Faculty club with Lamont’s good friend Oleg Jardetsky. Last night Bob Arko and I were the only Lamonters (that I could see) who attended the Ocean Observatory Initiative Town Hall meeting – hearing about how our community is planning to spend more that $300M of new money over the next few years to install some permanent interactive monitoring stations around the oceans. It seems that a program that was conceived in the late eighties by a bunch of seismologists is going to add little if anything to the global coverage of broadband seismic stations.

This morning (Friday) I flew up to Seattle with Spahr Webb and spent the day with another important benefactor, Jerry Paros.

The week was made more difficult by the fact that my computer died last Friday night, so last weekend was a frenzy of recovery efforts getting materials transferred from my backups onto an old G3, which remarkably kept me alive through the week. Thanks to Rob I will have a new one waiting for me when I get back to the office tomorrow morning.

It has been a beautiful week in San Francisco – blue skies and sunshine – hopefully the snow and the ice will all be gone by the time I return.

Have a warm weekend,