sailing the NorSea


WEEK 48 2013

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Saturday 30 November 2013
Saturday - Not too much going on. Did some more leaf raking, but I'm waiting for the big tree in the side yard to lose its leaves before doing that part of the yard.

In the evening I noticed that part of a string of lights had failed. I'll have to replace that tomorrow.

Apparently Comet ISON disintegrated at aphelion. Too bad, it would have been a nice Christmas comet they say. We do have an unexpectedly bright (for a comet) comet Lovejoy in the northern skies, that I hope to get a photo of, it the weather ever cooperates.

Friday 29 November 2013
Friday - I didn't do much, did some work on the house, some iOS stuff, visited with friends. Intermittent light rain.

I did put up the Christmas lights - I think this is the earliest I've ever done that. A couple of times I've waited until Christmas Eve, which is probably a bit late.

It's odd, but I don't have much shopping to do. Of course I always say/think that, but then end up getting something for people, a physical manifestation of giving-a-damn I guess, even though they'd probably be just as happy with a gift card.

My brother Bob stopped by - he's visiting my other brother down in Palmdale - and we spent a few hours talking, went out to lunch. He's heading back to Martinez tomorrow.

Thursday 28 November 2013

Thursday - Good to be back. I spent the morning cleaning the house. It's been a while since I did anything other than the most cursory - and two new kittens, a sick older cat, a dog, and myself can make quite a wasteland when we put our minds to it. So: picking up and putting away, vacuuming, cleaning, dusting - and I only did the downstairs! As I went I kept finding more stuff that had been neglected for far too long. And it is born in on me, again, that it's been nearly 20 years since I painted the inside: lots of nicks, scrapes, holes, etc. And the cabinetry is pretty far gone, not to mention the carpet. Ah well.

In the early afternoon I went over to Roger and Sheryl's for a nice Thanksgiving dinner. Turkey, fixings and pie - what could be nicer?

It wasn't a huge group, just six people: myself, them, their son and a set of grandparents. I think we had fourteen or fifteen people a few years back. Generally it seems that my holidays, and those of friends, are becoming simpler and more sedate. The times, the age of the participants?

Wednesday 27 November 2013

Wednesday  - OTR. I woke up early, looked outside - it was cold with a nice moon-bow visible in haze, and went back to bed. After getting up at 6am I did a few chores around the boat - cleaning dirt out of the lazarette and making sure it drained, rinsing down the boat, picking up and putting various things away. There was a nice breeze, it would have been a good day for a quick sail, but the thought of Thanksgiving traffic put the kibosh on that.

I noticed that my (formerly) nicely Flemished line was hanging over the edge, down into the harbor. I pulled it up, and found this little guy hanging on:


The line was just covered in muck from the bottom of the harbor. I think the people on the boat next to me did it, probably kicked it in when tying up. They are new, I've never met them, but they've left junk and debris on the shared slip finger before, left their halyards slack and banging, and once didn't even secure their roller jib - it was flapping and I secured it for them. Bah.

Then it was back onto the road, back to Lancaster. Traffic was already heavy by 10:00am, but not abominable. I was home around noon, and, after writing a report to the boss on the final inspection of Tuesday, started on my chores.

The cat and kits were all happy and healthy.

I raked the last of the leaves from the front yard, trimmed the excess gunk from the foam gap sealing I did on Monday, and generally performed more winterizing.

leaf piles


Tuesday 26 November 2013
Tuesday - OTR. A long day. Up at 5am, a cup of coffee and a breakfast bar, then off to work. This lasted until about 4:30 pm. CB and I finished up in Thousand Oaks, and rather than battle the rush hour traffic just stopped and had a nice burger. Since lunch had also been on the run, another breakfast bar and a coke for both of us, we were ready!! We then headed back to the office in Ventura, met up with Dave, and discussed various business things until nearly 8pm.

I was very, very, happy to get back to the boat (via Carl's Burgers) at 9pm. Way too tired to head back to Lancaster.

High haze and a waning moon have meant no visible comets....

Monday 25 November 2013
Monday - Doing more chores about the house. Cleaned up the back patio, collecting most of the chair cushions and putting them in the garage, collecting all the various fertilizers and poisons and putting them away. Sweeping the patio, and refilling the bird feeders.

I also took the window a/c unit and ancillary hardware out, and put the nice double-pane window in, so that will help keep the heat in the house. It took a lot less time than designing and installing it this summer!

I also drained the swamp cooler, and sprayed some weatherproofing in the cracks around it. The stuff is truly adhesive, not even acetone will take it off your skin once it has dried!

Finally got around to completing the little landscape block structure about the sprinkler manifold in front, to improve the looks and freeze resistance. I was using the last couple of blocks as a prop for the window a/c unit I'd put in earlier this summer, so these things had to be done in order....

Jimmy was really under the weather, maybe 50%, and just wanted to sleep, not eat or drink. Suzy was maybe 75%, still a little interested in food and play, though very sleepy. She was a bit puzzled by Jimmy's lack of enthusiasm....

It's a little bit quieter without the dog around. She was a bit more industrious out side than I realized, having dug holes in both tomato beds, and several places in the yard. Given the decrepit condition of the yard it isn't that big a deal.

OTR. In the afternoon I hit the road, down to Ventura for a full day's work tomorrow. We are doing the final I&I Repairs inspection walk through, assisting the VC people. Dave's on another job, so it'll be me and CB.

The boat was nice and dry, though there'd clearly been a fair amount of water in the lazarette!


Sunday 24 November 2013
Sunday - The kittens went to get their booster shots on Sunday. Sheryl has found a nice drive-up place, reasonably priced, down in Palmdale, so we took Jimmy and Suzy and Angle in for their shots. Because of Suzy's bad reaction last time I asked that they only do two of the five shots, and we'll do more next weekend.

By evening they were both a bit subdued, Jimmy more than Suzy.

S also took Angel, since she should be non-contagious now, and needs a bit of training before being given to her mom in a week or so. I dropped off the big cage and her toys in the evening.

Working away on this and that around the house. I raked some leaves in front, but stopped when I filled the greenwaste barrel. That's enough for my back. A leaf is a light thing, but wet leaves numbering in the thousands...that's a different matter.

The wetness meant I had to actually rake by hand, not use the mower and it's attached bag, which is my preferred method.

Sometime in the next few days I'll have to rake the rest up. It looks a bit odd, half completed.

Picture of the Week
farm equipment 
Photo Notes: Farm equipment detail, August, 2013.

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