This blog provides commentary on interesting geological events occurring around the world in the context of my own work. This work is, broadly, geological fluid dynamics. The events that I highlight here are those that resonate with my professional life and ideas, and my goal is to interpret them in the context of ideas I've developed in my research. The blog does not represent any particular research agenda. It is written on a personal basis and does not seek to represent the University of Illinois, where I am a professor of geology and physics. Enjoy Geology in Motion! I would be glad to be alerted to geologic events of interest to post here! I hope that this blog can provide current event materials that will make geology come alive.

Banner image is by Ludie Cochrane..

Susan Kieffer can be contacted at s1kieffer at gmail.com

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Taxis, balloons, kids, and a bit of dynamics

I spent last weekend in Edinburgh, Scotland, where I saw a wonderful parade. (Remember that taxi's in the U.K. have a very distinctive style! )

The taxi driver who took me from the train station to my hotel on the weekend when I arrived mentioned that on Tuesday the taxi drivers volunteered their services to take handicapped children on a parade and for a day at the sea--BBQ's, games and all-day fun.

They decorate their taxis with balloons for the day. Last year, he and his wife had risen at 4:00 a.m. to decorate their taxi with 300 balloons, only to have a strong wind come up and strip most of them off before the parade even started! 

Why does this qualify for a "fluid dynamics blog" (except for fun!)?
Because I'd never thought about how to attach 300 balloons to a car and keep them there for a day! Have you? 

They tie a mesh net on top of the car, and tie the balloons to the net. Unfortunately, the swaying of the balloons in the wind moves the net, which tends to damage the paint job on the car. My hat's off to these taxi drivers and their volunteer efforts.

Oh, yes--another taxi driver warned me in advance--they provide the kids with water guns to soak the spectators! Can you see the kid with the water gun in the photos!

Again, kudos to the taxi drivers who devote their day to this event!