Saturday, February 19, 2011

You Know It's Cold When.

You wake up to find five cats and a dog snuggled up in your bed.  Must be the down comforter..

The hairs inside your nose freeze up.

Smoke from the fires goes straight up.

The dogs are not real interested in going outside to chase rabbits.

I'm blinded  by frost on my glasses the moment I step inside the house

The cliffs to the East.

Needless to say, it's been getting pretty cold around here.  It hit -30 this morning which means I have four fires to feed.

 It's like watching the wood pile melt.  Hopefully it's supposed to warm up to -single digits next week so that will help.

A large part of the daily chores is just walking from building to building keeping the fires burning so the water lines don't freeze up.

Where's that Global warming.  Bring it on..

In the meantime I was glad to get all the snow pushed back, when (if) it does melt I want the water in the ditches - not the road. But that has to be the optimist in me talking!

Hope you and yours are wintering well!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Fooled Ya!

Just when we thought it was time to start sorting out the seed catalogues and think about revamping the irrigation system the temperatures plummeted.  The driveways are skating rinks.  I've taken to using the studded snow tire equipped truck to make the rounds.  Feeding the fires.  It's safer - even using studded soles and ski poles I find my feet slipping on the hard fractured ice.

Spent a couple of days doing some electrical trouble shooting on a friends logging equipment.  A buncher that has had a lot of re-wiring by people in a hurry.  I find equipment is like that. Electrical entropy sets in.  A relay is temporarily wired in place.  A wire replaced with one not quite the right size. Relay's cut out and wires left bare.  Makes trouble shooting a nightmare.  Of course nothing is exactly like the wiring diagram ( if I am lucky enough to have one..)  Wiring changes and additions and deletions are not marked on the diagram.  Just get it to work.  Forget sharpening the saw - we've got trees to cut down!  The thing is every shortcut taken now will only cost someone later.

Jo-Ann and I have be rebuilding the computer system at the local library.  Going from Windows XP machines to Windows 7 machines. Ten machines that don't all  have the same software packages.  A process that we are finding is not that easy.  Lots of the software written for 32 bit windows doesn't ( contrary to press releases ) work on Win7 64 bit machines.  Especially hardware drivers.  The trick was we couldn't take the system down and cut it over all at once.  It was in use by patrons and staff so had to stay live.  Getting printers wired to a Win7 machine so they could be used from XP machines took some research.  Fortunately we found some help on the WWW.  Unfortunately it wasn't correct - but at least it pointed us in the right direction.

Right now I am wondering what I should be when I grow up.  Software designer or potato grower and pig farmer.  Not that the're mutually exclusive but time spent on one detracts from time spent on the other.  I thought I would have all kinds of time this winter to work on software development but that didn't seem to be the reality.  I believe that software development is moving away from the desktop computer development and more into the mobile - cloud driven application development arena.  Which of course demands learning an entirely new set of skills.  Fortunately  Microsoft has been extremely generous and helpful supplying us with software and training opportunities .   I really have to commend them on their Bizspark program and would urge any software developers and people who want to be the next big thing to check it out.

We've been discussing a radical new idea.  Stop watching commercials.  I.E. T.V.  While working at the library we've discovered that they have whole shelves of hand held devices that are instant on, don't require batteries, and cover every conceivable subject.  They are called Books.  I have been spending at least 50 bucks a month on books and magazines that  can get for free at the library.  Who'd of thought!