Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Now, I grew up in Illinois, so, well, I'm impressed by the mountains in the eastern United States. I mean the highest are around, you know, like 3,000 feet. That's pretty good for Illinois, but my friends from the Rockies think the eastern mountains are like, well, glorified hills. In Colorado, they brag about the mountains they call the 14ers - those that are over 14,000 feet. That's impressive, but when I was in Ecuador, I was awed by the volcanoes that ring the capital city of Quito, and they rule much of the countryside - like Anasana for example - 18,000 feet. It dwarfed the tallest peaks I had ever seen. And then my host really amazed me. He said, "You know, Ron, some experts believe that Anasana used to be even higher." They think it was as much as 28,000 feet high. Well, so much for Colorado's 14ers. I said, "What happened?" Well, the volcano blew its top one day, and though the eruption lasted only a short time, the damage has lasted ever since.