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The Letter by generikat

View this thread on steempeak.com
· @generikat ·
$0.74
The Letter
![IMG_7071.jpg](https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmeMqMSCGUXgBEhPH6tdFT9LQhshwSZRneWj514ADxxxVw/IMG_7071.jpg)

The first Saturday of every month is my Saturday to help run the library. We all, with the exception of @jacobtothe who is there every Saturday, take a turn working the branch on the weekend. That schedule, for me,  has been in effect for the past seven years. When one is to open the library, they must take a trip to the post office to collect our branch's mail, and this past Saturday as I opened the library's post office box, I spied it. *The Letter.*

Now, most of the library's mail is either magazines for our patrons, catalogs full of office supply things, notices for Inter Library Loan packages, or junk mail. What we do no often get are hand addressed letters on nice stationary. My interest was piqued. 

Even more interesting was that *The Letter* had traveled all the way from Massachusetts. Why in the world would some gentleman on the East coast be sending a handwritten envelope all the way to a tiny North Idaho library? I just couldn't wrap my brain around it. 

Perhaps it was a thank you letter from a summer resident. That was my first thought. Our town is a lake town, so we have plenty of summer residents. *That was probably it* my over imaginative yet rather taxed brain surmised.

To my surprise, *The Letter* was far more interesting. Inside the handwritten envelope was a hand written letter. It was in grey ink on a fine, heavy weight paper. My inner Katlock Holmes got all excitable as my eyes scanned the contents within. 

*The Letter* was a request for depth maps of our lake. Apparently the Massachusetts man was an artist who was looking for topographical depth maps of our little lake. He had found federal GIS maps for our lake's shoreline and surrounding mountains, but couldn't find anything regarding the lake bed itself. He wondered if we had any resources that could help him.

Now, there is something magical about someone who takes the time to hand write a letter, in cursive no less, during these very advanced digital times. Don't get me wrong, I love to type and can fumble my way around the Google, but I still hand write letters to my grandma on a frequent basis. She loves them, and I love her, so I take the time to do so, even though she does spend a large part of her time on Facebook these days...

Anyway, it just seemed the right thing to do to try to help the guy. I dug out some of our old Aquifer study maps and perused the web a bit, but had no luck, so in the name of polite solicitation, I found the email of the Northern Panhandle Regional Manager for the Idaho Department of Water Resources. I wove him an email that I think captured the magic of the artist's request, for the Regional Manager responded to me within the hour. Interestingly enough, while he thought that the lake bed information had passed his desk at sometime for one reason or another, that there wasn't any actual formal data on the topography of the bed of our lake. His interest must have been as piqued as mine had been, for he said he also put some feelers out regarding the requested data and would forward anything he received.

So, even though I am not able to help the artist on the East coast, I am going to take the time to write him a hand written letter in return and give him a bit of hope, for at this moment I feel as if there is some water quality student looking for a master's thesis project, and someone is going to suggest that our lake bed needs a good mapping. It's like a serious dose of library infused serendipityness!

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*And as most of the time, the lone picture in this post was taken on the author's flustered and in need of a Dust Buster iPhone.*

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vote details (64)
@ddschteinn ·
Is that Lake Pend Oreielle? The USGS says they have a bathymetric map of it.  Didn't dig too deep, as I usually don't open much stuff  on my super duper computer, but on my tablet. (In case anyone sends me a nasty viri).  But that might help. Then  again, I'm sure you covered that base already.  I do think LIDAR is used underwater.  Maybe U of I has some knowledge, or Wazzou.  If not, don your Reference Librarian scuba gear, grab the waterproof paper and pencils,  headlamp,  dingy, and head on out.  You might get a new  '*brare badge* for that one. Then again, might take awhile too...hmm...   

 Even though I don't write letters anymore, since my Mom and Grandma are gone, and they were the ones who enjoyed them, it IS still a classic way to correspond. I have a friend and he and his partner send each other  a hand written one every day. Kind of cool. Though I would not have the time, I think, to do that.   Maybe if I get a special pen...
Well, I've rambled on here long enough for both of us.  Have a peachy night 'bK.  
Sincerely, Flat Pan Charlie
👍  
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@jacobtothe ·
It's not Pend Orielle.
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@generikat ·
Ha! I totally want the lake mapping brare' badge! That would rock! 

If it were Pend Oreille, it t'would be so much easier as there is data for days about that lake, alas it is teensy in comparison Spirit Lake, which is of course smaller yet still super excellent all the same.

I tell ya DD, my flintlocks have been getting kicked. I just can't believe eight days have elapsed since I last posted, but with the library being remodeled, working the farmers market, fair rapidly approaching, berry season harvest requirements, hay putting in to do, and my dad's 60th bday party this past weekend, this Kat is a bit diminished in the energy department. Think I am going to have to slow down a bit. Eh, who am I kidding, I have a horse back ride tomorrow, an upcoming 4H camping trip to chaperone, and a Riggins rafting extravaganza on the Salmon all in the next couple weeks. Bring on the grey hairs and exhaustion, there's fun to be had!!

I hope that you get a special pen someday, perhaps one with a skillet emblazoned on the side of it....

Night my feathered friend, must dash!
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@ddschteinn ·
So great to hear from you. Don't go TOO overboard, gotta take care of yourself.  You are the Atomic Energizer Bunny on steroids, most times, which always amazes me as to what you can get done. I wish I had your energieze.  
Wave hello to Riggins for me, I spent a bit of time there when younger.  And actually,  up the highway a bit at the Ranger station.  Ah, the small joys of life.  Cheers my panerific friend.  Stay as cool as you is.
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@creativecrypto ·
Hello @generikat, thank you for sharing this creative work! We just stopped by to say that you've been upvoted by the @creativecrypto magazine. [The Creative Crypto](https://thecreativecrypto.com/) is all about art on the blockchain and learning from creatives like you. Looking forward to crossing paths again soon. Steem on!
👍  
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vote details (1)
@old-guy-photos ·
Here the DEQ has depth maps of all the inland lakes. Maybe yours does too?
👍  
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vote details (1)
@generikat ·
LOL! Idaho is a touch behind at many things I have discovered! Which of course, is not always a bad thing, except in this instance perhaps.

Hope all is going well in your part of the realm my friend!
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