WEEK 44 2015
Tue- Wed- Thur-
Picture of the Week
This Week, 2003
this week, 2004
Years Ago, this week, 2005
Years Ago, This Week, 2006
Years Ago, This Week, 2007
Years Ago, This Week, 2008
Years Ago, This Week, 2009
Years Ago, This Week, 2010
Saturday - Back in Lancaster, very tired.
I fooled around, trying to get ready for the hike next week - we leave in
the early am hours on Monday, but was kind of dragging all day.
I found the little urea pellet stove Dave gave me, and both of my
packs - the external frame Kelty that I took last time, and the smaller
internal frame that is probably a good pound and a half lighter.
I have a couple of Mountain House dinners, but still need two breakfasts and
three lunches, and some on-the-trail food. Sheryl says she has trail mix,
string cheese, Clif bars and I have raisins, so morning oatmeal and coffee
is what's lacking now. I'll probably mix up some packets of instant coffee
and creamer, and check the pantry for instant oatmeal.
The tent is an open question. I have the little emergency tent, and even the
little one-man tent that I bought early for "practice hikes" in the local
mountains (hah). The emergency tent is 1 lb, the personal tent just under 3
lbs. I have a lightweight sleeping bag and Dave has a rollup air mattress he
said he'd loan me.
The weather report has been all over the map. Right now it looks like 25%
chance of showers while we're in the Canyon, but who knows? That's the NWS
report: the Weather Channel and Weather Underground database is confused and
reports the weather for Atlanta, Ga. as the weather for Phantom Ranch, Az.
On the rim it's going to be cold. But in the 60's down below.
I need to waterproof my boots - and Dave noticed I had a busted seam on one.
I'll have to see if I can close it with fishing twine, then neat's foot
everything as best I can.
It is Halloween and I went over to my friend Roger's for it, as usual. And,
as usual, he spent vast amounts of time and energy creating a truly
spectacular display. There were ghouls and skeletons and spiders and
dismembered hands and coffins and....
It's unfortunate that it doesn't really photograph well. At least, not with
my photographers skills. But it's good enough that people - even the adults
- are pretty impressed.
Friday - OTR.
The pipe is in, the contractor putting in asphalt at one end while he
finishes up compaction at the other. I left it to him - it's part time
inspection after all, and he knows how to do this stuff and the county
inspector will call him on anything he does wrong on base and a/c work.
Back to Lancaster, where I just fell asleep on the couch until late evening.
Last week I passed a pretty recent broadside on the Hwy-126 (minutes). This
week, as I was driving back on the Hwy-126 all of a sudden the guy ahead of
me slammed on his brakes. His hood had opened, at speed, and he couldn't
see. I was far enough back to easily brake and go around, but what if I'd
been one of the many, many, many drivers that think two car lengths is
Another 'found cd'
We've been watching the weather predictions for the Grand Canyon hike next
week. Unfortunately it's been changing almost hourly,
from warm, to rain, to pouring rain, to no rain again, and then chance of
rain: and that's just at the bottom. At the top it's going from sun to snow
I'd like to pack for anything and
decide when we get there, but space in the vehicle is pretty limited.
Wednesday 28 October
Wednesday - OTR.
Over at Information
Dissemination they had (another) article on the Littoral Combat Ship.
A particularly snarky comment amused me.
proponents may then argue that even without mission modules, the LCS
provides comparable capability to the recently-retired Oliver Hazard
Perry class frigates. The counter is that benchmarking capability
against a forty year-old frigate design with much of its weapons
removed is a false comparison; if all that was required was a
de-missiled, 1970s-era frigate, then perhaps there was little need
for a new ship at all.
The LCS is essentially a large corvette, designed for close-to-land
operations, and there's a lot of controversy about it. Essentially it's the
"trying to put 10lbs of sugar in a 5lb bag"
problem - the ships are just too small to do everything well, and not
particularly survivable in a high threat environment - one reasonably state
of the art missile would certainly
put one out of action and probably
But they were designed fifteen years ago, when the USA was the only
remaining superpower and superior to the modest threats. Now, well, not so
much. To be generally survivable now against even a second rate power you'd
need a flotilla: a couple set up with 'mission modules' for ship-to-air
defence, a couple set up for ship-to-ship defence, and a couple set up for
anti-submarine defence, and then a couple set up for whatever the actual
Tuesday - OTR.
The first thing I did was to reject essentially all materials for the
manhole remodel. Bah. But nothing
met the Specs. Fortunately rebar and concrete and epoxy are easy to get, so
it didn't delay the contractor too much.
He actually subbed out the work to a subcontractor, Pre-Con, who does this
sort of work every day, which was nice.
More unmarked stuff, but that's Saticoy.
Monday - OTR. Down in Ventura. The weather is
better - in the high 70's and low 80's, which is still kind of ridiculous
for Ventura, but so it goes. Better than 100F.
The work is going OK. The contractor is behind schedule, so I've been
staying on the job site more than was originally planned, but that can't
continue. The assistant project manager is covering inspection duties next
week and will probably come up with a less time consuming protocol.
After clearing up the grade issue the contractor is starting at the
downstream manhole and working upstream, which is the correct way to do it.
He's also getting ready to remodel the manhole base, deeper than previous,
which involves redoing the manhole bench, and getting rid of an unnecessary
Sunday - Slept in a bit, until 6:30.
Then it was off to the grocery stores to stock up for Lancaster and Ventura.
I didn't do any hiking, my feet are actually a bit sore still, and it's
probably better to rest them than to get some miniscule improvement in
The weather prognosis for this week at the Grand Canyon is rain, rain, and
more rain. Supposedly it's going to dry out over next weekend, but the
ground is going to be pretty damp...
I'll head down to Ventura tonight - after last weeks horrible commute I have
no urge to go down in the morning.