I cannot recommend the H. P. Lovecraft reading experience highly enough. In addition to being totally immersed in his fantastic writing style and dark, misty universe full of monsters and ancient, unspeakable evil, Lovecraft is making me a smarter person. New vocabulary for the win!
Word of the Week: Fulgurite
Fulgurites are awesome. They’re the result of a lightning strike (or some other intense discharge of energy, like a downed power line) to the ground. The soil/sand fuses and liquefies, then instantly hardens, creating a tube in the shape of the path the discharging energy took.
Here’s the really cool part: Fulgurites can be found all over the Sahara desert. Why would that be? There’s no lightning in the Sahara desert today, but the presence of fulgurites demonstrates that what is now a desert used to have completely different eco and weather systems. So tubes of glassy sand buried deep in the desert tell us that the driest desert on the planet used to have intense rain and thunder storms. Super cool!