Jordan Geology Project: The 4.54 billion year view (OR: What we don’t know)

One of my favorite things about geology is how much we don’t know. For example, the earth is estimated to be 4.54 billion years old, but the oldest rock we have ever found is 4.28 billion years old. That’s 260,000,000 years we don’t know anything about. 260,000,000 is also longer than the amount of time it […]

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Jordan Geology Project: Caves are not made for people (Pictures from Qozhaya, Lebanon and Petra, Jordan. OR: an internet horror story)

One of my transitional moments between childhood and adulthood was when watching a nature program about caves (yep, you know the one). And watching people have to scramble over sharp rocks and use harnesses and ropes to get places, I realized: caves are not made for people. To that point, most of the thought I’d […]

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Jordan Geology Project: How stalagmites and stalactites form (a quick side-trip into Lebanon’s limestone caves)

After I was in Jordan in February 2013, my Mom and I went to Lebanon. I wrote a bit about it then, but didn’t get into the rock-fun we had. On one of our day-trips, generously arranged by our family-friend Adla Chantila,  the Director of Finance and Information Technology at the Al-Mukasad Foundation, we visited Qozhaya, the Monastery of […]

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Jordan Geology Project: A sidebar into maps (or, how I’ve decorated my entire house with the help of the USGS)

My entire house is covered with maps, mostly geological maps. No, seriously: (I’m in the middle of a sewing project with my Fangirl Congress/Sewing Circle, so there will be lots of sewing paraphernalia in these pictures. View at your own risk) When I first moved in my apartment last March, I wanted to decorate and […]

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Jordan Geology Project: An introduction to weathering (Pictures from Petra)

As Achebe got from Yeats: things fall apart. One of the ongoing comforts of geology is that everything is always moving, slowly-but-surely. Just as mountains are always rising, other mountains are always being ground down. Actually, all mountains are always being ground down, they only rise if they are eroded at a slower rate than […]

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Jordan Geology Project: A brief trip into recent history (Or, What Indiana Jones Only Hinted At)

Before I get into our chapter on sandstone, using pictures from Jordan’s wonder of the world, Petra, I think we should spend some time in recent history. Recent from the perspective of rocks, so we will be covering 3000 years of the human history of Petra. To understand the fun of Petra, it’s important to […]

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