Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A cold November morning

The coldest morning temperature this season, just above 32. There was frost on the shed roof when I looked out the office window at the sunrise over the valley.

I left for the municipal building around 9:30. The parking lot was full and a few observers stood on the walkway leading into the voting room. An old guy in front of me asked if he was still on the register, and when asked to sign his name apologized for taking so long. Arthritis in his hands made it hard for him to write anymore.

I was number 248. Short ballot, no county or township referendums, just candidates. It feels good to vote.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Heat is On

Dark gray overcast clouds were just visible as I entered my office earlier this week. No stars, just dark. A light rain had started and it was supposed to get much worse throughout the day. The long cold slog of winter has begun. The heater clicked on in an attempt to warm the room.

We decided that the house needed a major upgrade to the sparse landscaping the builder had provided. She somehow found this fantastic company to come out to our home and propose a new plan (picture on the left). They have nearly completed the installation and we are delighted with the results.

We worked on the deck this past weekend. The potted plants were removed, hanging baskets taken down and everything cleaned and put away. I am not pleased with the maintenance required for the Trex decking. Spots. The deck faces east, warming with the morning sun and shaded in the afternoon by the house. Maybe the wet weather has not allowed it enough time to completely dry out, but the black ugly spots needed attention. Though not recommended I used a pressure washer, which helped but did not bring boards back to 'new' quality. (As I was bent over, slowly moving the pressure wand back and forth across the boards I remembered doing this task before....on the pressure treated wood I had at the last house. I bought the Trex to avoid this!) A relative suggested using some 'outdoor' grade bleach.

It just started raining again. At least it isn't snow.

Monday, August 16, 2010


A rainy windy Sunday afternoon and we had tickets to see a movie at the renovated Grand Theater in East Greenville. Its only a twenty minute drive, but we were going much further than that. We were traveling back in time. The tickets were for a rare screening of Steamboat Will Jr, a silent film by Buster Keaton. You may not know the movie, but you DO know many of the scenes. Remember the one where the front of a house crashes around Buster, but he is unharmed because he stands precisely in the open window as the wall hits the ground? The guy was amazing.

...and so was the organist. We were treated to a live performance using the Marr and Colton theater organ. It was easy to forget that music wasn't a part of the sound track. This was really good stuff and would definitely compete with some of the expensive entertainment we see today. (We didn't need sun glasses to enjoy the special effects either.) If you ever get the chance to see one of the old silent movies, do it.

Friday, July 2, 2010


I just started the grill. Kingsford Match-lite works very well if you light it immediately. (If you wait, and let the air evaporate some of the fuel, you might spend a lot of time with the propane match before a briquette gets hot enough to ignite.) I actually have two fires as I bought some holders to allow you to separate the coals for different kinds of heat. Helps me to keep the burgers from getting burnt. She made homemade baked beans, one of my favorites.

Building the fire makes me thirsty. Its nice to have some cold Hook&Ladder brew chilling to quench the building thirst.

A few new houses have been built in the neighborhood. The lot across the street was leveled and while we were away the foundation was poured. Two Amish guys arrived, with their helper and started framing. Yesterday the front door was hung and many of the windows were installed. I think the shingles will be installed next week. Its probably two months until their closing date.

Our outside storage building (the shed) was installed this week. The trailer had all kinds of remote control gadgets that allowed one man to precisely position the structure on the crushed stone foundation. I sprayed the inside with Thompson's Water Seal, and plan to insulate and build shelves next week. I haven't used the workshop in quite some time...it should be fun.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

An Alternate Universe

Too busy for extensive planning, we threw much of our supplies into large plastic trash bags and boarded the hydrocarbon powered space-time-warp cruiser to an alternate universe. A short two point five hours down the I76-ACE-GSP wormhole plunked us out onto another world. We found ourselves staring out over sandy beaches and breaking waves at a crisp horizon with all of the trivialities of the other universe safely locked away in another dimension. Planet Avalon would be our home for the next few days.


  • Read a book.
  • Eat some seafood
  • Get sunburned
  • Walk along the beach on the line dividing sea from sand.
  • Visit Cape May
  • Completely ignore the latest political, social, ecological, financial disaster/solution
  • Rent and ride a bike
Most of the objectives were accomplished, some multiple times. Unfortunately our home world does not give up it's children easily and all too soon we were drawn back to our persistent reality. However the trail has been blazed and we plan to return whenever another escape becomes possible.