3sailing the NorSea


WEEK 18 2018

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Saturday 5 May  2018
Saturday - Hot again.

I got up at 4am and watched the Mars Insight launch from Vandenberg AFB.  Not very exciting, just a red dot and some barely visible contrail in the pre-dawn dark.  As it moved south it staged, and became invisible.  The first stage is probably Lox/Kero, and the second Lox/Hydrogen - which is a light blue flame and hard to see.

I finished the sewer job, I had help, and we managed to get the sewer lateral repaired by mid-afternoon.  Not really all that big a deal, but I went slow, because I didn't want to do it again.

Essentially it was roots coming in through a rubber coupler.  It turns out that the repair was ten years old, and there is a sycamore nearby.  The pipes weren't aligned properly where a wye was added at some point ( and still aren't - as they are in between two pieces of concrete at either end of the new pvc wye pipe),  It looks like the pipe moved and moisture escaped and attracted the tree roots.  I mixed a bunch of rock salt in with the sand when back filling our repair, that should keep roots away while not actually killing the tree, according to Roger at Lancaster Plumbing Supply.

I also did a couple of small fixes to the swamp coolers on the roof - there was un-shielded electrical wire exposed to the sun.

Pretty darn tired in the evening, but went to a nice dinner at the Tokyo Steak House here in town for someone's birthday.  At a friends suggestion, upgraded from steak&shrimp to filet&shrimp - just a couple of dollars and it was worth it, an excellent piece of meat.

Book #13 was The Circle, by David Poyer.  There are something like 17 books in the Dan Lenson series, this takes place on his first assignment out of Annapolis.  He's assigned to an old Gearing class destroyer, with steering problems, a barely-not-cashiered captain, a crooked XO, a senior bosun who is a lush, disrespectful sailors under him, short of hands (it's the Vietnam War), drugs aboard, a gale north of the arctic circle, a soviet missile boat headed for the USA, and finally they get run over and sunk by a US Carrier.  Actually run over twice...

Anyway, the story pretty much rips along, as you can imagine.

Friday 4 May 2018
Friday - Hot, about 90F where I was over helping a friend dig up a bad sewer pipe in town.

Not much to say about that.

The cable arrived. I just need the to clone the old drive to the new drive and Bob's my uncle.

Thursday 3 May 2018
Thursday -

Wednesday 2 May 2018

Wednesday - Reasonable temperatures around here during the day, but very windy.  The noise in the vents is at first interesting and cool, but gets very old after a couple of days.

I ordered an SATA-to-USB cable from Amazon, an Anker brand.  It should arrive in a couple of days.

Did some more move related paperwork.  It seems to never end.

Did a bit of work on the app, talked to S about what she's doing, and about some stuff for the web page (privacy policies, disclosures, etc).

In the evening I watched a documentary about the Korean War battle at the Chosin Reservoir, American Experience: The Battle of Chosin.  Very interesting. At the very end of the documentary the weary marines are being transported by landing barge back to an amphibious landing ship.  The ship is clearly the USS Bayfield, my father's ship just a few years earlier in WW2!

Dad was out of the coast guard by 1950, but he was, by the way, a landing barge (LCVP/Higgins Boat) coxswain at Okinawa and Iwo Jima - his position is probably one of the two standing men in the back of the barge in the photo. This was an unopposed withdrawal, so standing up is OK, but when assaulting a defended beach everyone but the coxswain and gunner crouched down - those two necessarily had to stick their heads up. (This is a sure-fire way to tell if an old film is of a training exercise or the real thing...)

bayfield barge 16 at hungnam
Barge #16 of APA-33, the USS Bayfield, taking Marines to the ship.

Bayfield in the distance at Hungnam
APA-33, the USS Bayfield, in the distance at Hungnam.

Tuesday 1 May 2018
Tuesday - Cold and windy.  The wind was howling a bit in the swamp cooler ducts, so I closed the vent louvers inside.  It was still not perfect - the system could use a good 100% damper up at the swamp cooler unit, to lessen the noise and draft.

Eventually I had to turn on the pellet stove, it was down to the low 60's indoors and not warming up.  That's OK for a bit, but after after a few hours one begins to get chilled.

I needed to mail that letter to OCS and another bill, one of the last remaining non-electronic, so I walked over to the little mini market in the morning where there is a post box.  The round trip was 2.1 miles, there being about an extra half mile from my walking east initially, away from the market, to use a quieter side street rather than 90th Street West. 

My friends are concerned about my walking in an area with so many dogs, so I have a can of pepper spray, a few egg sized rocks, and a golf club. I put them all (except the club) in the fanny pack, along with some water and cheesy crackers, and my wallet and keys and phone, so it's not a big deal.

The new SSD arrived, so I'll have to research how to install it and clone the current system.   I used SuperDuper last time and it worked well, but I don't think I have access to a drive caddy for the old drive or an external drive to temporarily put system on, now that I've checked the storage and found the box of extra drives wasn't where I thought it was.  Sigh.  It's always something.

I did work on the app for a few hours, starting to get back into it.

Monday 30 April  2018
Monday - Cool and windy.

I did a lot of laundry. Also cleaned the bathroom, and washed a couple of the throw rugs.

I also wrote a letter to K, off at OCS.   His mother had given me a pre-addressed envelope on Sunday, stamped, so I guess I was expected to...  I don't mind, but it may be the first handwritten letter I've written in a decade.

Brought up the new Xcode and "provisioned" the iPad with the app for the first time in months.  Xcode complained that it couldn't connect, but there the app was, on the Simulator.  There are now three new compiler warnings where there were none before, from stuff that Apple has changed recently.  Thanks, guys.  Read about 100 pages of a book on Swift.  It's a bit dated - Swift is changing fast - but newer than my Objective-C books...

S gave me back my old iPad 2.  It no longer runs the current version of iOS, so isn't much use any more.  I am not sure if I can even provision it with the new version of Xcode.

There was a nice just-past-full moon in the evening, very orange.  Jupiter is rising earlier and earlier, and I think it's near opposition.  I think I'll clean the lenses on the Celestron 8 and take a gander.  It's much darker out here in the Acres, not enough for deep sky work but planetary observation should be nice.  I have that portable battery gizmo, so I can run the drive from anywhere on the property. If I re-purpose the old horse stall as a roll-off observatory it'd be nice, out of the winds - which have been howling at 40mph+ night and day lately.

Sunday 29 April 2018
Sunday - Warm and windy.

I went to WinCo in the morning with S, here were a number of things I needed.  We also went next door to Lowe's and picked up some hardware for her office.

Again, trying not to do a lot around the house. I ordered a couple of Poyer books that I hadn't read from the library. I also ordered a SSD for the MacBook - it's gotten painfully slow, so it's time...

My friend C gave me those potted herbs last week, I need to get them into the ground soon, as well as find some pots for the cat grass.

Picture of the Week

Tehachapi Snow

Snow on the Tehachapi Mountains (Winters Ridge or Middle Ridge?).

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