The Little Prince

This is a small temporary post meant to inspire and amuse us as we are waiting for Carl to return from his journey. It is about the three smallest volcanoes ever discovered and the asteroid (small planet) where they are situated, as well as the young boy who owns it – and about friendship.

“The Little Prince” was written by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and first published in 1943.

The boys little planet is as big as a house and has the name B-612. He spends the day caring for his planet, like cleaning his volcanos. He falls in love with a rose with four thorns but gets disappointed because she does not answer his love.
Still loving her he eventually decides to leave his home to find out what the rest of the
universe is like. After visiting six other asteroids he goes to Earth where he meets the
Narrator who wrote it all down.

“On the morning of his departure he put his planet in perfect order. He carefully cleaned out his active volcanoes. He possessed two active volcanoes; and they were very convenient for heating his breakfast in the morning. He also had one volcano that was extinct. But, as he said, “One never knows!” So he cleaned out the extinct volcano, too. If they are well cleaned out, volcanoes burn slowly and steadily, without any eruptions. Volcanic eruptions are like fires in a chimney.
On our earth we are obviously much too small to clean out our volcanoes.
That is why they bring no end of trouble upon us.”

To the Narrators surprise, the first thing the boy asks him is to draw a sheep. The
Narrator fails, and at last draws a box. But to his surprise, the boy is delighted with the

“This is only his box. The sheep you asked for is inside.”                  
I was very surprised to see a light break over the face of my
young judge:

“That is exactly the way I wanted it! Do you think that this
sheep  will have to have a
great deal of grass?”
“Because where I live everything is very small. . . ”
“There will surely be enough grass for him,” I said. “It is a very small sheep that I have given you.”
He bent his head over the drawing: “Not so small that– Look! He has gone to sleep. . .

On Earth the boy meets the Fox, which asks the boy to tame it in order to be his friend:

“One only understands the things that one tames,” said the fox. “Men have no more time to understand anything. They buy things all ready made at the shops. But there is no shop anywhere where one can buy friendship, and so men have no friends any more. If you want a friend, tame me. . ”

The fox shares his wisdom with the Prince before the two separate.

“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” “Men have forgotten this truth,” said the fox. “But you must not forget it. You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed. You are responsible for your rose. . . ”

The inevitable moment comes that the Prince goes back to his asteroid, leaving the
Narrator behind in deep grief. To read the whole story, get the book.
A pdf version (source of the italic quotes) can be found at:

At the first glance this book seems to be written for children, but I think it was even
more meant for adults. The message to all who live in the vicinity of a volcano and
especially to their authorities:
Be cautious, because: “One never knows!”

The Behemoth Dragon


703 thoughts on “The Little Prince

    • Very impressive pictures. I don’t know about erosion of the ozone layer; but I do know that these clouds occur in cold air. We get the very occasional ones over London; presume that the rest of the UK gets or can see more of them.

      • Its not easy to find concrete info about ozone condition because of all the global warming propaganda, connected to taxation and other money related stuff.
        But it seems that the ozone layer over Greenland at least has decreased considerably in the last year or so, much more and much faster than can be considered normal.
        Its quite unusual to see the sky covered with those clouds as far as the eye can see, and in towns that are hundreds of kilometers apart.

  1. wooow latest sat image is awesome O.o

    really starting to wonder if it is a second vent (to the right side of the island) like said on ER earlier.

    • I am also thinking that looks like another vent to the right. A shame really if it is as it will ‘dilute’ Bob and he will never reach the surface, but then according to some that was never going to happen anyway. Still a shame I think but definitely interesting and I still think this eruptive period has a lot to give yet.

    • Yeah, look at that! Most of them picked up something. Shallow volcanic earthquakes not listed at IGN yet? P-wave manifestation from remote source?

      I am not sure, but I think that an Atlantico earthquake was removed from the Boleto listing. Did anyone see a recent (this month) Atlantico EQ? I could be wrong, of course. I have been tracking the Atlanticos compared to El Hierro.

    • I don’t know. It seems to be an impressive harmonic tremor which is also showing in the very low frequencies on the spectrograms. The stations most affected seem to be: Fuerteventura (CFUE); La Gomera (EGOM) and Gran Caneria (EOSO). The others also show it. In addition, La Palma (EHIG) is showing aditional earlier tremors.

      In fact they all show it except for CHIE. Does anyone know if any of the other El Hierro stations are showing this harmonic trremor?

    • Going out to buy reading glasses,as I can’t see. Catch you all later. Please disregard the above question if it has already been answered.

      • No, you’re good. Can’t tell you how many pairs of glasses I go through. I buy extra pairs just to keep up. Then, I lose the extra pairs.

  2. Is it coincidence or does it mean something as the screw movements seem to be back on the graph for La Palma since the harmonics picked up again on el Hierro?

    • Probably means something. La Palma is picking up signals from El Hierro that are lost in the harmonic tremor from CHIE?

      • Or it might be local noise as there is a gap in the spectrogram in the lower frequencies between the signals from the screws and the signal from El Hierro. If it was all from El Hierro, I am guessing that there would not be a gap.

  3. If there was a blockage and this has now been cleared and the magma is free to move again and is doing so as confirmed by todays graph are we not heading for uncertainty again and should the people of EL Hierro now be made aware that maybe there is still danger ahead . As far as I now understand a good percentage of the islanders think its all over now ?

  4. Una
    Did not the fine lines of harmonics over the last days not mean that the magma was not flowing freely and was hitting a form of blockage and now that has cleared somehow the magma is free to move and is building up again ?

    • I do not know if we talk about the same (as I am not expert on this). I refer to the amplitude of tremor. If this is fine, this means that the lava flows easily, and if this is going widen that would mean that the magma encounters obstacles to flow freely. That’s what I’ve noticed in all the stations of the island. So I think that one should not lower our guard. Bob is still there.

      • It really depends on the source of the tremor.

        If the tremor is caused by de-gassing, then a stronger signal indicates that more de-gassing is going on, implying greater magma movement.

        If the tremor is caused by flowing past a blockage, then a stronger tremor would mean more effort is being expended trying to flow past the blockage.

        Since no one fully knows what the actual cause of tremor is, it’s sort of up for grabs as to what it really means.

        It’s like trying to figure out if the pumpkin pie is done just by looking at it. It may look nice, but until you stick a knife or fork in there to see if it’s done or not, you don’t really know for sure.

        With Bob, we don’t have a way to actually “see” what it’s up to, we have to guess from the tremor signal.

    • Interesting. London is ~55 degrees from the quake so it should have arrived here at around the same time as at the Canaries.

      Hope the victims have some decent shelter, food and heating.

  5. To me a increasing amplitude of the tremor graph means more magma is flowing (freely). As long as the magma goes to Bob (or one of the Bobettes) and keeps submarine it will not be very harmful on shore I think. If the amplitude of the tremor graph decreases I think this is because of 1. less pressure behind the magma, 2. a lack of magma, 3 some blockage in the conduit.
    But this says nothing about what will happen next.

  6. “Magnitude of Siberian quake raised to 9.5
    The magnitude of the quake that struck south-eastern Siberia late on Tuesday has been raised to 9.5, according to Russia’s emergencies minister Sergey Shoigu. The quake is the strongest ever to be detected in the region he said. There have been no reports of damage or casualties since the tremor – initially reported as 6.7 on the Richter scale – struck a sparsely populated area in the Republic of Tyva near the Russian-Mongolian border. However Shoigu expressed doubts that there has been no damage at all and has ordered the authorities to stay on the alert for any aftershocks that may follow.”

  7. @ Geolurking
    As I would like to ask you a personal question about your blog post some time ago, would you contact me by clicking on my name, go to the “contact” page and send a message to the email address you see there?

  8. Hello everyone, Well I have glasses now and can see again, and what on earth is Bob up to. There have been 2 earthquakes on the 27.
    First one at 21.22 latitude 27.7850 longitude 18.0459 depth 21 mag 1.8 NW Frontera
    Second one at 23.30 latitude 27.7794 longitude 18.0826 depth 12.5 mag 1.1 NW Frontera.
    He has gone from one extreme to the other on the spectrogram.

  9. Diana

    What is happening to the chart are these movements the drumbeats again I have never seen a graph looking so strange before?


  10. Avcan FB Copied.

    No nos gusta nada la última actualización del espectograma de CCAN en Tenerife. Parece que entre las 8 y 9 de la mañana hay fiesta localizada (Fernando)
    See Translation

  11. We do not like the latest update of the graph of NACC in Tenerife. There seems to be localized party (Fernando) between 8 and 9 a.m.

  12. There are discussing something in the area of the parque natural in tenerife.
    We discussed noise in the area of the National Park but it is information unconfirmed. We will be vigilant (Fernando)
    9 minutes ago · Like · 1

  13. New Post Up.

    Finally back among the living again.
    Tip of the day, try to avoid H1N1 flu… It was/is not fun to have.
    I hope to have the energy to keap up the posting now. And I wont be going anywhere, anytime soon either.
    Back to eating christmas ham now…

  14. Welcome back Carl. I sympathise. I had that last year at the same time as my Husband. We were both laid out on the sofas in the living room and had little energy to even argue as to who should walk into the kitchen and make some warm drinks. It was horrible.

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