Peanut plant maybe?

New camera, Canon A570 IS, is here but now there is nothing much to take pictures of.

During the summer, the area behind Duh is usually planted with corn. This year however something else has been planted, I’m guessing this may be peanut or some type of legume that will nourish the ground for next summer. If you know what plant this is, let me know.

I went for a walk yesterday to walk away my back-in-bethlehem blues, and found 2 lost golf balls at the practice driving range. Maybe I can start a collection. Well, I’ve been back 2 weeks but I still find it hard to settle down to some sort of Duh routine again. Spent the past few days clearing away all the travelling stuff.

Starting this Monday, I’ll have to hit the library for several hours a day to prepare for my upcoming comprehensive exam in September. Eessshhh….1 1/2 months to the big exam, it’s like my nightmare coming true. I would occasionally dream that a big exam (SPM or STPM) is one month away and I haven’t started studying yet! I cannot believe the Dept of Special Ed is doing this to me, after telling me the past few years that this type of “memorize and regurgitate” type of testing is ineffective and does not test real learning, they are subjecting me to the same type of testing. Oh well, at least I have years of experience doing this.

Update July 23 2007: The plant could be soybean.

Turnaround point

After 1.7miles along the Appalachian trail from Newfound Gap, we reached the junction between the AT and the Sweat Heifer Creek Trail. Took a picture here, ate a granola bar, then hiked back to Newfound Gap where the car was parked. Got caught in the rain on the way back.

With this post, I end my Smokies adventure series.

Appalachian trail

I was all excited to hike the Appalachian trail. I realized later that the trail does go through Pennsylvania, the nearest point is like an hour to the north of Bethlehem, so I didn’t need to make the 10 hour drive down to Tennessee to hike it. But I think this stretch of the trail is almost the highest point along the whole Appalachian trail. The highest point is Clingmans Dome (6643 feet or 2025m).

Dead fir trees

I was telling Becky that lightning must have struck all those bare dead trees near the top of the mountains. It was only later that I learned that it was actually some bugs called adelgids, that was brought in from Europe, that killed all those fir trees.

Clingmans Dome

Somehow this structure reminds me of the land of the Ewoks in the Return of the Jedi. Not that the ewoks would build that but it could be a lookout point build by the Empire. And the waterspots make the grainy photo even more authentic.

Well, here is the highest point in Tennessee. It’s actually a 0.5 mile hike up to this place. The steep trail is paved, sort of like the road up to Penang hill from the Botanical Garden.

Cherokee tomahawk

We went to the Cherokee Indian Reservation just outside the Smokies. The place where we visited was another over-commercialized area, lots of souvenir shops selling non-Indian-made stuff. This is the only souvenir I bought from the Smokies area – a native american-made tomahawk keychain. However it does look kind of flimsy so I probably won’t ever use it as a keychain.