sailing the NorSea


WEEK 11 2014

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First Post, 17 March 2002
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Saturday 15 March 2014
Saturday - Did some chores of my own in the morning, then helped out R&S move a swamp cooler bought at a yard sale. It's one with a fiberglass body, that they'll put into a rental. The metal units rust and corrode out quickly, and it's a big yearly chore and expense to maintain them. The fiberglass units are more expensive up front (unless you buy them at a yard sale) but last longer.

I actually bought a metal unit there myself, as a spare to the one I have. It was cheap, $100, and huge, so I think it was a good deal at about 20% of a new one. What I didn't think of was: where do I store the thing?

Lunch afterwards was at Lee Esther's, where I gorged on (as always) the shrimp Jambalaya. So good.....

Book #13 was Existence, by David Brin. I've had this sitting on the Kindle for a year or two, but while interesting it doesn't really grab one and it's so long that you really need a great deal of uninterrupted time to read it. Essentially it's an essay on The Great Silence or Fermi Paradox, and one possible (rather terrifying) explanation.

Friday 14 March 2014
Friday - Back to work on the app. The usual: stuff I expected to be hard was easy, easy stuff was hard, stuff that I thought I'd fixed (random shuffling!) isn't working properly. But it is good to be making progress again.

Talked to a friend and signed up his teenager to mow my lawns. It's hard to admit, but my back just isn't up to doing that and anything else. Oh well, it's a good deed, they get an introduction to the life of a worker bee and I get a chance to keep up on other things. And there is, easily, a legal sized sheet of paper filled with chores and tasks to be done around this place... Anyway, they'll be by late Sunday morning to get up to speed.

I noticed that my oldest apple tree isn't blossoming. In fact it isn't even leafing out. This isn't good. I'm a little worried that I injured it when trenching for the little retaining wall, but I only went about three inches deep, at the drip line, and I don't think I cut through anything other than maybe one or two roots the diameter of my finger - certainly not a tap root or anything. S says that maybe "borers" got to it. Hmmm.

The other apple trees are doing well, blossoming and everything. Indeed I sat under one for lunch and listened to the hum of the bee's. Well, I thought they were bees at first, then realized there were wasps in there too.


Yep, found a nest up in the eaves. Have to do something about that...

Thursday 13 March 2014

Thursday - Still not feeling well. This is pretty frustrating, to be laid low in the middle of what should have been a very productive week and not be able to string a couple of thoughts together. It's nice to have a good excuse to read all day, but it gets old after a while. The weather is beautiful, and I dare not go anywhere either. Gahhh.

Dave's trying to organize a trip to LA to learn to use the "new" Promark GPS sometime next week. I think it's a Promark 3, but I'm not sure, I've never seen it. 

I did a search of my own site (by Googling "   halifax"), and the proposed visit to Halifax and the HMCS Sackville come up as a comment in May 2002, to meet with Dad's sister, my aunt Trinket. That was also the weekend I broke my finger.

Wednesday 12 March 2014

Wednesday - Working away on the app in the morning. Lunched with S but feeling very unwell in the afternoon - some sort of stomach flu. Bah.

My attention was shot, so I read Book #12, Broken Homes (Rivers of London #4), by Ben Aaronovitch. Enjoyable, if not quite as snappy as the first two books. Better than the third I think.

I recall my father telling me about growing up in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, in the early 1930's. One thing he did was sail (row?) about in a small boat. He mentioned that there were several old schooners in the bay and that he was admonished by his parents to never go aboard. But, of course, he did. He said it wasn't all that dangerous, but that the hatches were all gone, you could see down into the bilges and that you had to be careful where you stepped.

I've never been to Boothbay Harbor, but I saw a picture on Tumblr today of a couple of old, derelict schooners and thought "Maybe...". And, after a bit of research using the names visible on the back of the ships I found this page at Hazegray, Maine's Last Big Schooners.

If you go down a bit on the page there's a section on Boothbay Harbor where they discuss the Courtney C. Houck, the Zebedee E. Cliff, Maude M. Morey, Freeman, and the Edna M. McKnight. So it could have been them.


Also interesting, to me, is a mystery photo of three schooners, moored side by side, which exactly replicates what Dad, said, that he could sail out to them and then climb from one to another.


Back when he was still with us I tried to find images like these, but couldn't. The page is dated to 1998, so it's odd that I couldn't find it back in the day. But I didn't have any names and of course Google wasn't what it is now. Too bad.

In the early 2000's, I think, I tried to organize a trip back east with him, to visit Boothbay and also the Canadian Corvette HMCS Sackeville, up in Halifax, but he decided his health wasn't up to it.

Tuesday 11 March 2014
Tuesday - Not much to say, I didn't feel well, so it was kind of a lost day.

Book #11 was Iron Gray Sea (Destroyermen #7), by Taylor Anderson. A couple of weeks ago I found all of these on the shelves at the local library, free is always nice.

Monday 10 March 2014
Monday - Off to the tax preparer. Things went pretty well. I have a bit of homework to do, and am waiting on a couple of K-1 documents, but things are mostly OK.

On the way home I stopped at the Barnes & Noble in Palmdale and had a look in their computer section. The new edition, the 4th, of the Big Nerd Ranch Guide to iOS Programming is out. I didn't buy it ($50!), but was tempted. There was also a new Glen Cook book in the Instrumentalities of the Night series, but I'll wait for the library copy. It's a good series, but complicated and rather dark.

Worked a bit on the app in the afternoon, but was really tired and didn't make much progress.

Sunday 9 March 2014
Sunday - A beautiful warm morning, though a bit overcast. I was outside on the patio with my coffee and cat when I heard the distinctive noise of a large propane burner. There was a hot air balloon flying over, so I went and got my camera out. And then there were more and more balloons. At one point there were seven or eight in view. The neighborhood dogs were ecstatic.

In some photo's you can see virga - rain falling but not touching the ground; and in other photo's the virga appears to be blown upwards. I imagine the balloonist's were keeping a wary eye out for updrafts and downdrafts.

And it turned out to be nice day all day, but I didn't get out into the yard to finish that planter - my tax appointment is Monday so I was in the throes of paperwork. I did get out into the front yard and mow it, so the house doesn't look too derelict.

Generally things are ready to go for tomorrow - there are a couple of things I couldn't figure out, but that's why I pay someone....

Not too much else going on. Enjoyed my Korean soap in the evening, as usual. Sadly My Love fron Another Star has wrapped up and it was the series finale.

High haze means no astronomy pursuits this weekend.

Picture of the Week
sunday morning balloon over lancaster 
Photo Notes: Sunday morning balloon over Lancaster.

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