So……..

I do not yet have a picture of a roasted rotisserie chicken to post but I ‘allege’ that the Fresnel lenses kicked up the output to 325/160 degrees F/C.  That is only 50 degrees better than before but it should be enough to prove the ‘oven’ claim when we decide to cook in it.  I have a pic of the temperature gauge at 325 but the real proof will be in the taste and appearance of the chicken……within a few days, I hope.

Sal’s carb on her Suzi has gone wonky and so we removed it and cleaned it and did crap and, of course, it was worse.  Sal is getting better as a mechanic, tho.  She has to be.  I cannot get my hands in there.  After our failure, an outboard mechanic-friend then took the carb for a better cleaning and inspection.  Sal got it back on the engine yesterday and it started up right away but still only ran half-throttle and idled a bit rough.  More to do.

The ship’s lights I started cleaning up two blogs back or so are up and looking great!  That was a schmozzle.  We wired the workshop almost 7 years ago (I think) and, of course, did NOT draw out the wiring plan before or after.  OR since.  So, when we went back to the task, we just looked at what wires were in the unused junction boxes and ‘remembered’ where they went and came from.  But we kept blowing fuses, tripping breakers, even twice screwing up the inverter and were faced with a light that, when the switch was thrown, would not run off.  That was a three day (two hours a day, tho) fiasco.  In retrospect, we had ‘remembered’ the junction box wiring wrong.  The light we installed needed a new wire and the light switch we were using was simply not part of that circuit.  This is NOT rocket science, folks.  It is almost as simple as plumbing.  But we came up short by encountering mystery shorts.  Solved now, tho.  Sheesh.

Came up in my boat on a big Humpy the other day.  It was real close.  Big flukes rising and descending right in front of me.  Pretty neat.

After the plague, comes the pestilence.  We’ve had mice!  Six trapped in three days!!!  We spent hours and hours mouse-proofing the house when we built it and it has been pretty successful so far.  But a door was left open and a few got in.  But six!?  Methinks they have found another way in and so the ‘tracking-the-mouse’ challenge is now underway.  Life OTG has mice.  Part of the scene.  They come.  They go.  And we kill ’em.  Still, the local gossip is that this is a bumper year for mice and everyone is having to deal with it.

First Trump, eh?  Now this mouse business!

Oh, well.  We’ll win.  We are bigger than they are and I, at least, am not afraid of mice.  Sal?  (We’ll leave that topic for another day).

I am gonna buy a car.  Something cheap, small and 4×4.  Gonna put it on the island and drive it around a bit now and then…show guests the lay of the island, visit folks, pick up guests, do some community work, maybe drive the doctor to see patients now and then…that kind of thing.  I figure I may put 500 miles on it a year…if…probably not….

Our 40-step or so front stairs need rebuilding.  The lower third needs it now.  Almost dangerous.  Kinda.  Of course, that means I may get to it by next Spring.  It’ll take me awhile to get in the lumber and well, you know…whales go by, guests come and go and we go out to play around in the garden and up the creek or on the boat.  Then there’s Netflix and dinner and wine.  Spring might be a bit optimistic. 

NOT a hot-blog day but keeping the ol’ fingers a’typing is important (for me).  I am looking forward to saying something worthwhile soon.  DO NOT hold your breath.

 

16 thoughts on “So……..

  1. ALL of that info was interesting.
    You covered about 7 subjects in as many paragraphs.
    Well done.
    If i wasnt so busy I’d like to get up there to help.

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  2. I definitely need to get my ass up there 🙂
    I could have helped you out with the wiring (I’m an electrician), the carb I’m not so sure, probably would not have succeeded also. Stairs…definitely would have helped out
    And that 4×4 might come in handy in the (near) future!
    Pretty busy around here too this month. Had this crazy idea to make my own apple juice and cider. So I am now in the process of building my own wooden juice press, bought tons of stuff (wife is getting a bit nervous of all the space I am occupying). J-Have bought 100kg of apples that are slowly rotting because my price is not ready….and will pick up 150kg more apples tomorrow. And in between that, we got ourselves a second dog last week (rescued it from the shelter), so things are quite hectic now….bit out of our “comfort zone”

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    • Get used to that – being outside your comfort zone – ’cause OTG is mostly out of the comfort zone (thus the reason for being uncomfortable doing wiring for only two hours a day). I have it down to a science: remain comfortable in the morning drinking tea and working on the computer, go out and be ‘uncomfortable’ lifting, wiring, fixing, repairing and generally doing ‘dirty work’ until 4:00. Clean up until 5:00 and then return to being comfortable starting with a glass of wine and moving on to dinner and a movie. Repeat as needed.

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  3. About the mouse problem, it sounds like you have a surplus of mice and a shortage of cats. In short, the supply has exceeded the demand. Que faire?

    Our sole cat here knew a bumper crop was in the works so she sacrificed her virtue to have a litter of kittens this past spring. She has been of an age to do so for several years, but has heretofore refrained. So now we have six cats on patrol outside and they do seem to be doing a brisk business catching mice. I stepped outside 20 minutes ago and there was half a mouse on the doorstep. I am finding mouse remains daily. One has never made it into the house in the past dozen years or so.

    Hearing of your problem reminded me of the “gripe sheet” humor that has made the rounds on the web. You need the “cat installed” solution. I reproduce the whole thing for those who may not have seen this and who might appreciate a bit of a laugh to start this Labor Day weekend.

    After every flight, pilots fill out a form called a gripe sheet, which conveys to the mechanics problems encountered with the aircraft during the flight that need repair or correction. The mechanics read and correct the problem, and then respond in writing on the lower half of the form what remedial action was taken, and the pilot reviews the gripe sheets before the next flight.

    Never let it be said that ground crews and engineers lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual logged maintenance complaints and problems as submitted by Qantas pilots and the solution recorded by maintenance engineers.

    P = The problem logged by the pilot.
    S = The solution and action taken by the engineers.

    P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement.
    S: Almost replaced left inside main tire

    P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
    S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

    P: Something loose in cockpit.
    S: Something tightened in cockpit.

    P: Dead bugs on windshield.
    S: Live bugs on backorder.

    P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
    S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.

    P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
    S: Evidence removed.

    P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
    S: DME volume set to more believable level.

    P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
    S: That’s what they’re there for.

    P: IFF inoperative.
    S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

    P: Suspected crack in windshield.
    S: Suspect you’re right.

    P: Number 3 engine missing.
    S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

    P: Aircraft handles funny.
    S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

    P: Target radar hums.
    S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.

    P: Mouse in cockpit.
    S: Cat installed.

    P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
    S: Took hammer away from midget.

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    • I like cats.
      Have had several over the years.
      But they dont stop at mice.

      Cats kill more song birds than any other animal.. Millions of cats in North America means hundreds of millions of song birds are kaput….. every year.
      Mouse traps, fresh peanut butter…. done

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      • Generally agree.

        However, at times we have been absent for long stretches, particularly in winter. A couple of cats on patrol outside has meant no mice inside. If one is gone for a month, or two, or three, I am not sure how to make it work with traps and fresh peanut butter. Do you place a few hundred traps around outside the house and outbuildings? Or do you have to wait until the mice have made their way inside where they encounter traps? I prefer they never get in in the first place. Does not take them long to mess things up.

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  4. As for your idea to buy a vehicle, it’s just fine.

    But, if you can avoid, don’t go too cheap. What I have seen in OTG locales over the years is people buying old beaters that are on life support the day they are purchased. They are near death. Buyer pays a lot of money to have said vehicle barged over and the thing causes problems from the start. Before long, the thing is a wreck left at the side of the road for the rest of us to appreciate its natural beauty as part of the landscape. One of my pet peeves. If you bring it here, pay to take it away when it dies.

    I am of the view that one should keep one’s junk vehicle in town, where service is readily available. Then buy the newest and best vehicle one can afford for off grid. A vehicle you know will always start and run well and can reasonably be expected to run trouble-free for some considerable length of time. That includes new tires. I see people hauling flat, nearly bald tires, to town for repair. Not my idea of a good time. They fool around endlessly with flat tires and dead batteries. And, when that vehicle is getting to be too much of a headache, but still running, drive it onto a barge and take it back to town to be recycled. Don’t just take it out into the bush, tie it to a tree, and put a bullet in it.

    Disregard my comments if you are a motor vehicle mechanic with the time, inclination, skill, tools etc. to keep even the worst piece of junk running well.

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    • You are right. Of course. Your good car/bad car bush/town theory is an interesting twist, tho.
      I did bring a beater and it was good until it was not. But, when it was NOT, I gave it to some young guys for free. Mo fixed the relatively minor issues and it is now employed hauling wood for folks. Still, you are right. I should have bought something better. This next time I am going for better. I have found a 4×4 Toyota that needs a bit of work but should have 25000 kms on it easily (it is only at 180K Kms now) and I will fix it up before it comes over. Having said that, I can fix a lot of simple to medium crap but am limited to simple because I do not have road access to my house and tools. I have to ‘float’ everything a few miles to where the car is on the only road. Poor excuse but I am clinging to it. I would LOVE to have something really sound but, honestly? I will simply NOT use it much of the time. This is 75% for others. And I am NOT so wealthy that I can do that properly.
      What we really should do out here is what they do in Belize. Ever vehicle down there is a Ford. I asked the guys why and they said that, “At first, mon, back in the day, the cars were Fords. Just a few. But, when we go to the US to get a car now, we always buy Fords because there are dead, old Fords here to salvage parts from.”
      If we could all decide to buy, say, Suzuki/Tracker/similar then the boneyard would eventually serve us all as a parts store. But making that happen is a chore I am unwilling to undertake.

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      • Tell you what.
        If I win the Lotto max I’ll get you an elctric vehicle and has it choppered into your hacienda.
        We’ll have a beer or three and then I’ll leave your with the detailed instructions on how to wire up the “charger”…. 🙂

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    • I agree. Good little gas-sippers. And I can almost lift them myself (with Sal) And no vehicle can reasonably exceed 30 kms on the logging roads anyway. Speed is NOT a factor. But sometimes ‘carry-ability’ is a requirement. Logs, firewood, bookclub, groceries for many, tools, etc. A 4×4 small pickup like a Toyota Tacoma or Nissan Frontier is better but sound ones are very expensive. I love the little Kei trucks but they are stupid expensive starting at $5K and going up. A 2002 Ford Exploder is only $2K. A 1999 Ford Expedition is only $3K. But Japanese vehicles are usually better for longevity than domestic vehicles. “I’ll take Japanese 4×4 for $2500 please, Alex.”

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