1 Solar Chicken Door Don’t leave the party
to close your chicken door.
Programmable, solar and easy to
install, this gate is predator-proof
and features a photo sensor option
that closes the door automatically
when the sun goes do wn.
2 RFID Cat Door This door works with all
chips (the one your pet gets at the
vet for ID purposes) and allows
different settings, meaning any
animal can leave, but only your
pet can get back in. Stores up to
32 pet IDs. $125, sureflap.com
3 GPS Pet Tracker Dog out of sight? Don’t
worry. This GPS device attaches
to your pet’s collar, letting you find
him quickly on a map. Customize
a safe-travel zone, get alerts and
track your pet’s daily activity as
well. $79, pettracker.com
Just because you have
pets doesn’t mean you
can’t also have a life.
Whether it’s chickens,
cats or dogs, here are
a few innovations that
keep your mind at
ease and your beloved
buddies safe. K. P.
School of Rock
Marin is an idyllic place for those with an urge to explore. And though it is easy to focus solely on the
views, College of Marin geology professor Steven Newton suggests occasionally looking down — or up —
to observe the impressive plethora of rocks that comprise the land we love. “The most common rock type
in Marin is grey wacke (a dirty sandstone formed under water by a variety of rock fragments)," he says,
"but there is plenty more to unearth, depending on where you are.” Here, some of the best local spots to
indulge your inner geologist. CALIN VAN PARIS
In Marin / CURRENTS
Congratulations. Your child got
accepted into Harvard. Now, who
is going to pay for it? Before loans
come into play, take a look at
scholarship opportunities, as there
are thousands of them, offered
by schools, nonprofits and others.
Collegeboard.com alone has more
than 2,200 possible scholarship
options that total nearly $6 billion. Here are some aspects to be
mindful of in your quest for the
optimal funding fit. K.P.
DEADLINES Some scholarship application
deadlines are early in the fall of senior year.
Mark the due dates on your calendar and
work your way backward to figure out how
much time you’ll have to get each piece of the
RESEARCH Researching scholarships, requesting information and application materials, and
completing applications all take time. Be sure to
allot time for each step.
REQUIREMENTS If you have a question about
whether you qualify for a certain scholarship,
contact the scholarship sponsor. There’s no
point in applying for a scholarship that you are
not eligible to receive.
INSTRUCTIONS Stick to the word limit for
the essay. If supporting materials are not
requested in the application, don’t send them.
Ring Mountain is an
easily accessible area
that, according to
Newton, is rife with ser-pentinite, a greenish,
that happens to be the
state rock of California. “There are a couple other
rocks up there that have been really cooked and
altered,” says Newton, citing eclogite — which features a mixture of red garnet, green omphacite and
blue glaucophane — and blueschist as examples.
Inverness Just past
the city of Inverness
lies a weathered granite cliff face, easily
viewed and examined
from an unassuming
pullout. A favorite field
trip stop of Newton’s,
the wall of granite showcases quartz and other
minerals contained within and, according to the
professor, “looks just like granite you would find in
the Tehachapi Mountains in Southern California.”
The Point Reyes conglomerate is a sandy,
large, rounded grains
that have been sculpted
by water over millions
of years, resting atop a granite foundation. For
a different kind of geologic excursion, Newton
recommends walking the earthquake trail near
the Bear Valley Visitor Center; the parking lot lies
directly on the San Andreas Fault.
A leisurely drive along
Conzelman Road reveals
well-exposed chert, a
rock also visible along
the local hiking trails.
And if you find yourself
at Point Bonita Lighthouse, Newton suggests keeping
an eye out for pillow basalts, which he describes as
“scrapings of the ocean floor that have been metamorphosed, or cooked by heat and pressure.”
COCKTAIL CHAT TER