Thursday, May 6, 2021

Sign of the times.....

 7:30 am - Thursday - May 6th - Seal Rock, OR - 48° F, 87% humidity, wind 14 mph out of the south.....cloudy today with rain forecast for about 10 am, and a high today of 54° F.  On this date in 2013 we had just arrived at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to work at the INDY-500......↴


Wednesday found my gravel pile too small to complete another site, but another delivery was scheduled for later that day so I busied myself with mowing and edging sites A-1 to A-3.  You will recall I just did this chore less than 10 days ago, but the grass had grown a good six inches long during that interval, and in was in need of attention.  I retrieved the white golf cart, and the trailer to haul the Craftsman lawnmower and Stihl string trimmer up Cross Street to our site.  In all it took me close to 90 minutes to beautify all three sites.....

It'll look good for about 10 days, and then I'll be back again  

I then picked up the 'In and Out' list from TLE go check those sites.  We only had one 'Out', and three 'Ins' (arrivals).  Just as I was checking the last site I got a call from TLE telling me the FedEx driver had knocked down our entrance sign....wait,what?  How on earth?  As I walked from site #41 where I had received the call I could see the sign laying flat on the ground.....


.....I was just about to go home for the day, and there I was with a project needing my immediate attention.  I retrieved a few tools, and materials from the landscape shed area and headed back to the sign to attempt to fix everything well enough until it can be properly repaired.....


....first I had to stabilize both vertical posts, and reattach the cross member which connects them at the top. I used some stakes pounded into the ground at the base of each pole to stabilize them, then screwed them into each of the posts......



....next I reattached the electrical conduit for the sign light.......


.....once the conduit was reattached I began to move the sign into position to reattach to the posts.  With the use of a few wooden blocks I was able to raise it high enough by myself to begin to screw it back into place.......



And she's done....

....by the time I finished it was almost 2 pm, and time for TLE to return for the second half of her split shift (2-4 pm).

While there was no promise of a memorable Coastal Oregon sunset due to a heavy marine layer just off shore, there was no wind so around 7 pm we headed out for a sunset fire.....


......there were adult beverages, of course.........


....and a stogie for moi.....


.....now all we need is a reasonable facsimile of a sunset........



.....that was as good as it got, but it is the ambiance that counts, and that was perfect!

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Wednesday, May 5, 2021

NiCad......

 7:37 am - Wednesday - Cinco de Mayo - Seal Rock, OR - 50° F, 76% humidity, wind 7 mph out of the northeast....mostly sunny today with a forecast high of 64° F.  On this date in 2018 we were visiting Niagra Falls.......↴





As it turned out I should have gone ahead and done site #6 on Monday, but I get slightly ahead of myself.  

Tuesday began with heavy cloud cover, which transitioned to partly cloudy, to completely clear by 3 pm.  I started work at my usual 10 am by walking up to the barn to retrieve the Massey-Ferguson loader to spread some more gravel.  As I drove past site #6, which I had skipped Monday thinking a customer was arriving that day, I saw it was still vacant, so decided, on the spur of the moment, to work on it.  Usually it takes me about 3 hours to completely level, and cover a long back in site with the small gravel, so I thought even if someone arrived Tuesday I could get it done before they arrived.

There was already a lot of gravel in site #6, but it was all down the middle forming a large crown.  Instead of immediately hauling more gravel to the site I decided to rake the gravel from the middle to each side.  While that saved a lot of gravel hauling it took me close to an hour to finish the raking part.  Once that was done I began hauling some larger gravel to widen the side nearer to the electrical pedestal, and then finished with the small gravel.  This worked well, and I was just finishing the compaction of the site around 1:45 pm (yup, 4 hours in all) using the loader when a customer arrived pulling a 5th wheel.  I quickly vacated the site allowing him to back into the site...whew, that was close!  I think that's the longest I have spent on one site.

I put away my tools, and began the drive back up Cross Street to the barn.  I don't think I have ever posted an aerial picture of the property here, so here goes.....

Click on picture to enlarge

....at least, now, you have some perspective.....Cross Street is quite steep.....probably 11-12% for about 200 yards.

I was home just before TLE headed off for her two hour shift in the office.  I was awaiting a couple of Amazon orders, and one of them, some new NiCad batteries, arrived.  These are the type of batteries used in my solar lights, and I had determined (or, at least I believed) that a couple of those batteries had outlived their usefulness, so I was hoping that replacing them would get two of the strands working again......


.....as it turned out, I was right....the batteries were bad, and now I have functioning solar lights once again.

The clearing skies provided another beautiful Coastal Oregon sunset for our viewing pleasure, and if it had not been so windy at the time we would have been watching it from the 'lido deck'.....


.....thanks for stopping by!

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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Numero siete (#7).......

 7:39 am - Tuesday - May 4th - Seal Rock, OR - 50° F, 100% humidity, wind 6 mph out of the north......cloudy this morning with clearing later....forecast high is 58° F.  On this date in 2020 we were leaving the McCloud Newell Compound in Wittmann, AZ  for Flagstaff, AZ after a two month stay.  We had planned to be there two to three weeks, but the arrival of the Wuhan Flu changed all of our plans for the summer.......↴


After a day of cleaning firepits it was back to regular programming for me Monday.....hauling, and spreading gravel.  I've been working my way up the 'hill' over the past couple of weeks, and only had 6, and 7 to complete to finish that section.  I wanted to work on 6 next, but there was a reservation on that site for Monday, so I spent my energies on site #7 instead.  As with most of these long back in sites it took me three full hours to complete the task of leveling, and widening it first with the large gravel, and then finishing it with a layer of small gravel.....


.....this site had a bad crown in the middle of it, and it was not very wide.  I added about 3 feet to the back of the site, and about 3 feet to the right side (right side as you face it from the street in the picture below), then had to lay down a bed of large gravel for almost the length on each side of the site......


.....you can see how much I had to raise the right side of the site (side nearest the electrical pedestal in the picture below) to make the site level.  The same was needed for the left side......


.....by the time I finished with site #7 it was after 1 pm, so I headed back up the Cross Street hill to the barn to park the Massey-Ferguson for the night.  

By the time I got home it was close to 1:30 pm.....as I was emptying my pockets prior to changing my clothes I discovered my 2-way radio was missing.  I remember seeing it clipped to my right pocket as I was driving down Cross Street first thing Monday morning, but did not remember seeing it the rest of my shift, so it could be anywhere between the barn, and the gravel pile next to site #14.....doh!

I finished changing clothes, then began the walk down through site #2 (right below our site) along the road by site #7, all the way to the gravel pile.....no 2-way radio.  I then walked  back down the hill past site #2, and on to the office where I advised TLE, who was still on duty, I was looking for my radio, then up Cross Street to the barn.....still no radio!  The only place left for it to be was in the barn, so I unlocked the doors, and began to scan the dark interior floor for the radio (there is no electricity in the barn, hence no lighting), and did not see it anywhere.  I then began to examine the Massey-Ferguson itself.....nothing on the floorboard....man, where is that thing?  I was about to turn away from the loader in defeat when my eye caught the form of the radio in the dimly lit interior wedged between the seat, and seatbelt buckle.....an audible sigh of relief could be heard escaping my lungs....what a break!

As I walked back down Cross Street to site #A-2 I radioed TLE to advise her I had found the illsusive 2-way radio, and would see her at home, which would be in just a few minutes as I had just spent the last 1/2 hour in search of the 2-way radio.....okay, enough excitement for one day.

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Monday, May 3, 2021

Its the pits......

 7:43 am - First Saturday - May 3rd - Seal Rock, OR - 46° F, 93% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north.....cloudy again today with a forecast high of 54° F.  On this date in 2018 we were in Ashtabula, OH having a few brews, and a late lunch at Briquettes Smokehouse......↴



We had a record 15 checkouts Sunday morning, and since it was a little crowded in the park for gravel work Terry asked me to go through each of the 15 checkout sites, and clean out each firepit.  TLE's shift was from 11 am to 2 pm, so I started my day with her intending to work just two hours, and by 1 pm I had finished the last of the 15 checkout sites, and all 15 firepits were ready for the next customers.....


......I was just going to head home, but decided at the last minute to take the posthole digger up to our site to finish transplanting the remaining five escallonia bushes over to the new fence line I created back in March when we were completing the 'lido deck' pad.....


....by the time I finished with the escallonias it was 2 pm, and TLE was arriving home.  I ran the cart back down the hill to put it away in its shed, and was back home in minutes.

Over the course of the afternoon the skies began to clear somewhat, and by late afternoon we had a lot of blue sky.  The trend towards much less rain, and more dry days continues along with higher low temperatures (46° F this morning).  Most mornings lately there has been no dew, and the ground is pretty dry.....it is a good trend.  This time last year we were heading toward Flagstaff, AZ to escape the 100° temps of Wittmann, AZ.  TLE and I continue to be asymptomatic to the Wuhan Flu, and there is no doubt we will continue to be so.  Ahhh, the blessings of living in rural America!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Sunday, May 2, 2021

Rise and shine......

 8:04 am - Sunday - May 2nd - Seal Rock, OR - 50° F, 94% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north.  Cloudy today with a forecast high of 56° F.  On this date in 2018 we visited the 'Rock And Roll Hall of Fame' in Cleveland, OH......↴



We had a little rain overnight, but by 7:30 am it was mostly dry outside.  After our round trip drive to Albany and back on Friday I was ready to relax on Real Saturday, and that is what I did.  TLE and I watched two recorded UEFA Champions League matches, and then I headed out to the trailer to putter around.  I decided to pull the adapter from the receiver hitch on the VW, clean it up and repaint it.  As you will recall I cut part of the riser away to enable it to fit the contour of the VW, and those parts I cut had gotten kind of rusty over the past few months even though I had applied some black Rustoleum.  I was determined to do a more thorough job this time.....


That's dew you see on top of the riser.....I took the picture of the finished product this morning....looks much better with no visible rust!

.....I utilized the wire wheel on my bench grinder to get most of the rust, and then my Dremmel with a very small wire brush to get into the nooks and crannies where the larger wire wheel could not penetrate.  I then applied multiple coats of gloss black Rustoleum to the entire riser.

After all that work it was time for a much deserved nap, and then a few episodes (well, mayble more than a few) off the 'Bus Grease Monkey' YouTube channel.  And with that another day at SRRVC comes to a close.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Saturday, May 1, 2021

Calapooia..........

 7:49 am - Real Saturday - May 1st - Seal Rock, OR - 48° F, 87% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north......cloudy today with a forecast high of 54° F.  On this date in 2014 I finally repaired the dent/tear in the aluminum skin on the right rear corner of the Newell which occurred back in July of 2012....an accident caused by me backing up without TLE's assistance resulting in the 'pinching' of the trailer against the right rear corner.  I used metal dollies to reshape the skin to its original curvature, and then covered the damaged area with some aluminum tape, and then diamond plate I purchased at Home Depot......↴



.....to preserve symmetry I installed another piece (not pictured) of diamond plate on the left rear corner.

As I mentioned yesterday TLE had an optometrist appointment at the COSTCO in Albany, OR, for 12:30 pm, which is about a 1.5 hour drive from SRRVC, so to be sure we arrived on time we left at 10:30 am giving ourselves a 30 minute cushion.  When we left SRRVC the temps were in the high 40's, in contrast to the low 70's in Albany when we arrived at COSTCO just after 12 pm.  As luck would have it the Optometrist was able to take TLE in immediately.  While she went through her examination I wandered around COSTCO looking at stuff.  TLE reemerged from her examination with a new prescription, which she immediately took to the order desk.  They were able to reuse her existing frames, which she likes a lot.  

By the time she was finished ordering her new glasses it was just after 1 pm, so we set out to find a good, local microbrewery at which to have lunch.  We settled upon Calapooia Brewing Company, which gets 4 stars on 185 Yelp reviews.  After being led astray by the Yelp directions, we finally arrived at Calapooia (pronounced 'cal-uh-poo-yuh') around 1:30 pm....





.....I chose their Pooya Porter, and TLE their Devil's Hole Stout, both of which we thoroughly enjoyed.  For our entrees I chose their Reuben Sandwich, and TLE the Hearty Salad (greens, and roasted vegetables).......




....it's been a  while since we enjoyed some craft brews, and pub food, and this place has it all.  We always say the food must stand up to the brews, and it certainly does!

By the time we finished our leisurely lunch it was after 2:30 pm, and we still had a 90 minute drive home.  Fortunately traffic was light going both directions, and we arrived home just after 4 pm.  We'll have to return in two weeks to pickup TLE' glasses, so maybe an return engagement at Calapooia is in order.  By the way, Calapooia is the name of the local river, which is a branch of the Willamette River, and was the name of a local Native American Indian Tribe who were the first inhabitants of the Willamette Valley.

As promised by the weather guessers, it began to rain around 8 pm, and rained on, and off most of the evening.....the best kind of rain.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Friday, April 30, 2021

Twenty-one and four...........

 8:28 am - 5th Saturday - April 30th - Seal Rock, OR - 54° F, 82% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north......partly cloudy skies today with a forecast high of 57° F.....possible rain by mid afternoon....we'll see.  

On this date in 2016 we were arriving at Lake Tahoe for our third summer....our first view of Lake Tahoe that year.......↴


After a day of demolition (Wednesday) it was back to the 'gravel pit' for moi.  I had two sites (4 and 21) upon which I had done some work over the past week, but was interrupted by the arrival of customers.  Both those sites were vacant Thursday, so I continued my work getting them level with the large gravel, finishing with small gravel over the entire site.  In all I worked three hours......

Site 4 is now finished....

.....and so is site 21

This picture gives you an idea of how much gravel it took to get site 21 level front to back, and side to side

.....I was home a tad after 1 pm after driving the Massey-Ferguson loader back up to the barn for the 'weekend'.  I added up my hours for the week, and was surprised to see I hit 17.....my biggest work week since we arrived back in September.  The weather is warmer in general, and I'm back to wearing t-shirts and shorts to work.  The day I don't have to wear a jacket to work will be a milestone.

I was finally able to deploy all of my solar yard lights Thursday, as they are now all working again.  For some reason after sitting in storage for months some of them have to sit in the sun for a few days before they begin to work again, but as of Thursday they are all working, and when I got up at 5 am for a bathroom run they were still out there twinkling.  I'll try to remember to take a picture of them tonight.

Friday we head over the the hill to Albany, OR to the local COSTCO  for TLE's annual optometrist appointment so I'm sure there will also be a Trader Joe's visit, and maybe a micro brewery thrown in for good measure.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Thursday, April 29, 2021

Somethings rotten in Denmark......

 7:42 am - Thursday - April 29th - Seal Rock, OR - 46° F, 100% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north.....heavy cloud cover today with a forecast high of 58° F.  On this date in 2013 we were camping at Greenbelt National Park (an urban forest) near Washington D.C. and the University of Maryland......↴


A few days ago we were tasked with the demolition of the old, rotting deck at the rental house up the hill (Fairwinds), and on Tuesday Fred worked on the section in the picture below.  Since he is off Wednesdays, and I am the only one on duty, it fell to me to finish the other half of the demolition......


....each plank had bout 14 stainless steel, square drives screws affixing them to the stringers underneath.  Unfortunately, the stainless steel screws lasted much longer than the wood, and was time to remove them so the planks could be replaced.....



I would unscrew a couple dozen screws, them remove them, and move onto the next row


....even though Terry was off Wednesday he came up the hill with me to show me what needed to be done, and while we were there one of the planks (above) broke under his weight sending him crashing to the deck injuring his shoulder and leg.  He ended up spending the rest of the day at the ER in Newport getting Xrays.  After delivering Terry back down the hill to his RV so his wife could drive him into the Newport ER, I headed back up the hill to finish removing the remaining planks......


About half way through the remaining planks

....I had removed all the screws in the section upon which I am standing when this picture was taken, and was about to remove the final planks when one of them gave way sending me falling into the bush on the left side of the picture below.  I was not hurt, but my pride was....I was being extra careful, and still fell victim to the rotten planks.....this is not a job for old guys......




....it took me four hours in all to finish the job, but now the deck is ready for the contractor.  I was home around 2 pm after my longest work day yet.  I'm not sure I want to put in too many 4 hour days, but one here and there wouldn't be too bad.  

It was a nice sunny afternoon until around 4 pm when the marine layer drifted inland once again obscuring any chance of a watchable sunset....thanks for stopping by!

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