pirate edself with corona captain ed
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WEEK 24 2004

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Saturday 12 June 2004

Saturday - went kayaking off of Santa Cruz Island on Saturday. My friends and I originally were going to go back to Anacapa Island, but couldn't get space on that ferry, so decided to try out a new island. They are both part of the Channel Islands National Park, though Santa Cruz is a much much larger island. The park actually extends a mile out to sea from the island. It was a great day - warm, calm seas, a good ferry trip to and from the island. The kayaking was wonderful.

There were four of us which allowed a natural grouping into twosomes. We first paddled downwind, past an island covered in nesting pelicans, then spent some time paddling back upwind. .Generally you want to do strenuous stuff early, then relax in the afternoon, letting the wind help propel you back to the landing. The water was clear - twenty foot visibility or so, good for the few divers that were there and fun for us boaters. There is a small sea cave for the ambitious paddler to try out. My friend R had an easy passage, I almost lost it when the kayak briefly went athwarthship's in the narrow section, and poor W got upset and upon going into the drink was kind of scraped up by the barnacles on the side. No danger - but like falling into a rose bush (his comparison), not something you want to do on purpose!

Kayaking near to the sea cliffs results in less wind, but a bit more off shore allows you to feel the swells, which is really neat. Now and then a curious otter or seal would swim up and stare at us from twenty feet away - we weren't charged by jealous hairy fellows with tusks, like the last trip to Anacapa.

I "practiced" my offshore kayaking egress/ingress technique a couple of times, much to R's amusement.

Generally I just bring trail mix and jerky, but one of the guys actually brought food - fine cheeses, turkey and pastrami - and beer - so we had a great lunch. One just leaves the stuff in a cooler on the beach while boating, along with warm (and dry) clothes, which makes things nice. After lunch we took a short hike up to a headland on the island, which had a stupendous view of the Santa Barbara channel.

Pictures when my friend gets his film developed!

Friday 11 June 2004

Friday -  Mischievous Raccoon Wreaks Havoc on International Space Station. (the Onion).

Light posting for the next day or two - I am going down to visit with a friend in LA and probably too tired to post saturday!

Thursday 10 June  2004

Thursday - working away on engineering and planting all (almost) of the plants I bought weeks and weeks ago. They were dying in their little pots, probably from being root bound and from nutrient exhaustion. Well, they've moved up the the 'show' now and can strut their stuff. Or die trying.

I washed the cat hair covered blankets and sheets in the guest bedroom today, but then my visitor had to cancel out. So it goes.

Dinner was at Applebee's so that we could harass Julio, my friend's daughter's classmate, who works there as a waiter while getting ready to graduate from AVC,  and thence to CSUN film school, and eventually to take Hollywood by storm.

Grauman's Chinese Theater in Los Angeles
Grauman's Chinese Theater in Los Angeles.
Cool Map of the hand prints here.

This is just pathetic:

The 23rd Psalm, King James Version:
"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil."

Church of England (new):
"Even if a full-scale violent confrontation breaks out I will not be afraid, Lord."

(via Asymmetrical Information, in turn quoting from the Wall Street Journal.)

Interesting Reading.
Good News from Iraq, Part III . You won't hear much of this on the old media. They're too busy trying to re-create what they see as their glory days of the Vietnam War. Failure and despair is their message.

Wednesday 9 June 2004

Wednesday - talking to my dad this evening he mentioned needing a camera manual. I sent him a link to the Olympus website. He emailed me back a while later:

Thanks for the site...it's got all
the information I need and more.
A bit of a problem printing some
of it.  The printer, which is seldom
used these days, seized upon it's
chance and printed about 60 pages
in very very small print. I tried everything
to stop it but on and on it went, it's yellow
eye blinking malevolently, defying me to
stop it.  All else failed and I turned the
computer off. Upon restarting it,
it blinked, made an obscene sound and
started printing again.  Fortunately my
computer sensed something amiss and
showed me how to empty the printer

Via Geekpress, a little puzzle. It took me about ten minutes, but I had to feed the cat in that time, so...five. Or so.

While at the library I noticed that their self checkout machines had been replaced with new devices and decided to try them again (the old machines weren't very good). They are very nice, and quick, a real "upgrade". I think I'll be using these instead of standing in line.

Talking to my friend Tim today he mentioned talking to a friend of his that lived near the Reagan Presidential Library. That friend  decided to pay his respects yesterday. He got up and into line at 5:30 am, and actually passed the casket at 9:30 am, a wait of four hours. The person behind him in line had left San Diego at 1:00 and driven hundreds of miles. It says something about the man and president that 100,000 people came to pay their respects at this sort of personal cost.

update from Tim, 9:30 Thursday morning:
You got half the story correct about the funeral.  ****'s part was good, but the person behind him left Monterey at 8pm and hit the traffic jam on the 118 at 2am and didn't get there until 5:30, like Fred.  Then they had the 4 hour wait to see the casket for a minute.  You were mostly correct.

Yeah, half right. I'd make a good reporter for the NY Times: a 50% chance of reporting info I'd heard the same day correctly.

Tuesday 8 June 2004
Tuesday -  working away on things. Doing a couple of CFD runs with one of the euler modules. Since it's one I don't use as much as the module I helped to write it took a bit of fooling around and RTFM to get the unsteady aeroelastic solution going properly. It looks good as if it is running properly now. We'll know in a couple hundred hours ( man, I need to get that parallelization project finished! ).

Mowed the back lawn as it was starting to look a bit ratty. I really need to get to work on it, one of these days. I was concerned about the birds nest, and frightening away the parents with the mowers noise, but they are still around and feeding the fledglings.

We are having a bit of a windstorm lately - gusting to 37mph today. There is a lot of dust in the air.

The Cassini Probe to Saturn has almost arrived! Cool pictures already, with many more to come!

I showed my friends daughter how to get into manual mode on her Olympus 5050 - it's fine as a point and click camera but she's ready to step up to the enhanced control over compositions it can offer. She's quite the photographer already and is planning to take a course in digital photography this summer over at the local junior college. I thought about it for myself, but it's three hours a day, four days a week, for six weeks...

I didn't do anything on these pages for Memorial Day, and it's been on my mind. If you look at the Picture of the Week 22 2003 you will see a picture and a note about my fathers friend, Johnny Fry, who died on Okinawa. There were no family members or friends who perished in Normandy, or Europe, that I know of. My fathers ship, the U.S.S. Bayfield was there at Utah beach, but that was before he was on board.

Naturally my flag was out.

Monday 7 June 2004

Monday - my friend Tim may visit sometime soon. So I've assigned the cats to keep his bed warm for him:

Cats keeping the bed warm...

I'm sure he'll be grateful. Yes, that is a bit of the black cat sticking out - he likes to sleep under the covers sometimes - when not sleeping on the pillow...

In other news: my father has purchased a nice Olympus 750UZ. Or so he says - I haven't actually seen any pictures of it, or taken with it, despite promises...

The Aircraft Carrier Midway has now opened in San Diego as a naval museum (and very large convention hall!). Sounds cool - I need to get down there and check it out.

Sunday 6 June 2004

Sunday - went to see Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, at the matinee. I bought tickets on-line and we arrived about forty five minutes early and were surprised to find them already seating people. It was fine, however - we got nice seats right where we wanted. The 8 year old and twelve year old went off and played in the arcade while we adults sat and talked. ( The kids were back in time for the trailers - disappointed that there wasn't a new SpiderMan trailer but happy to see that Hillary Duff was going to star in a contemporary remake of Cinderella. )

The Prisoner of Azkaban was good - I particularly enjoyed the photography, sets, and way the movie was shot. Later a friend told me that it was produced by a new director, one who hadn't even read the book, just the script. Interesting. It was still very true to the book, but needed to be a bit longer to do the plot justice (it's the shortest movie of the three filmed so far). The dementors were properly frightening for the eight year old - his sweater would come up and cover his head at certain times, and a little piping voice would ask "is it okay now?" from under.

In the evening I went out to dinner with some old friends, tutored their daughter in geometry for a bit, and then we watched on TNT the ending of "Joe Black" which the daughter had never seen. ( ..."I heart Brad Pitt" ... ). One thing we noticed was that the musical track was so loud that it completely swamped the voices of the actors - something I have complained about on my own tv before. Good to hear it happening on someone else's box!

Picture of the Week

P and J at Stratford on Avon
Photo Notes: This is my brother in law and niece in across from Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, where Shakespeare is buried. Probably taken last year sometime. A picture from my own trip a few years back is here.

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