Misc. on a Sunday

In other news this week:

1. Ants invaded my bed for two nights. That was unpleasant. Waking up because you have ants in your hair is not a good way to wake up. They freaked out the new cat, too, who has been sleeping on my head. She saw one on the pillow and jumped straight up. It would have been amusing had it not been *my* pillow.  This house is built on the roots of an old walnut orchard.  Ants live in the roots.  They like to come into the house when it rains.

2. I am such a spaz. I just had a good cry over someone [no idea who they were, I got there via a damned google ad in my gmail] who built an expensive new mission style house and then bought and transplanted some big old grandad Manzanillo olive trees to the property. The part that made me cry was happy – I’m always so sad when the old olive trees around here get bulldozed down to make room for progress. So somebody is saving them, somewhere. And probably making big bucks on it.

3. We get to go see live music tomorrow night. Mark Hummel, Kenny Neal, and John Fucking Mayall [w00t!11!!] at the Sierra Nevada Brewery Big Room, one of my ATF venues for live music. I am even going to take the last John Mayall CD I bought and have him autograph it, fan-grrl that I am. It’s going to be great, even if it is on a school night. Luckily I’m working from home on Tuesday so I don’t have to get up too early.

4. God, but it’s gloomy here today. Raining off and on, but not too too hard. We finally cut that tree up that fell during the big storm earlier this month. Bob got to try out his new chainsaw. He cut, I dragged branches over to the cement pad to await further chopping and and hauling. Didn’t take all that long. Couple of hours, maybe. The whole time we were doing it the hummingbirds were chiding us loudly for upsetting the status quo. They’ve been very happy with the tree down, it gave excellent perching places convenient to the feeder.

Last week I was looking out the kitchen window at the tree and a really beautiful big woodpecker or maybe flicker was there, not six feet away. It was pecking away (sideways) at the downed trunk. I’ve seen them numerous times on the far side of the yard but could never get a good look. See, now I’m sorry we’re disposing of the tree.


Bob’s been out there fighting to get the stump out for the last three hours. I went and helped push until I saw stars, with no effect. I’m all for tying it to Andrew’s truck bumper and giving it a yank but Bob says that’s a good way to have a weird accident and he’d just as soon not have to redo the siding on the house. Spoilsport.

Muddy yard, cutting up the fallen tree

Hella Stormy

We had a big storm rip through here yesterday. Power was out for 30 hours. It’s been back for an hour or so, now … and the UPSs just started flickering again. Yikes. I used to like storms when I was younger. Not so much, now. The worst part of it all is that I couldn’t get on teh intarwebs. That, and all the damage.


Click the pic for a bigger view. We lost a tree and about 40 feet of fence. We have to take the dogs out and stay with them while they do their bizness until we get it fixed.  I just love doing that at 5 a.m.

Also, I can see that we forgot to repaint the chimney. 🙂

Here’s the rest of the pictures if you’re interested. http://picasaweb.google.com/bcamero/January08Storm

Maybe the weirdest part of this whole storm was going into the front bedroom and seeing the cat asleep on the bed and a bird inside at the window, perched on the blinds. I’m not making this up. No doors or windows were open. He hopped to the sill when I went for the camera.

Bird inside

I went outside and pulled the screen off and Tim opened the window from the inside and the bird flew out. My best guess is that it came in through the cat flap. The one that the cats can’t figure out how to use. When the tree went down in the back, the birds were all very confused, and at the height of the storm, they were sheltering in and around the back patio, which is where the cat flap is.

Re: the funeral  – I’m going to Idaho for the funeral tomorrow, hopefully the planes will be running more or less on time by then. Apparently there were a lot of delays yesterday and today. In my heart of hearts, I was hoping I wouldn’t be able to go. I hate funerals.

Washington state flood pics


Gadzooks! I hadn’t heard much about this, but my niece lives in Raymond, WA, and her husband works for a utility company there. This is what he wrote:


Most people haven’t even heard about the storm (basically a Hurricane: 130+ mph winds) that hit the Oregon and Washington Coasts on December 2 nd. We still haven’t got everybody’s power back on and H and I went without power for over 72 hours. The pictures of Centralia and Chehalis are towns on Interstate 5 just 50 miles East of us off the Coast. You will see the Exit Sign for Raymond and Pe Ell and we live in Raymond. It was a CRAZY storm and lasted over 30 hours.

Most big storms (and we get a few a year) only last about 6 to 10 hours and then we get to work. Last I heard, 5 deaths in WA are attributed to the storm and 10 in Oregon. The National Guard had to come in. All communications were down at several times. Emergency Op. Center had to employ the local HAM radio guys to talk to the outside world.

We were stranded, having to cut our way through downed trees to get anywhere. Hwy 101 (the Coast Hwy that runs Mexico to Canada) was flooded and blocked by trees. Only 1 gas station in the whole county had power and it was 45 minutes from our office. We and the DOT had to ration fuel because we would have run out.

And How Was Your Day?

1. It rained and got cool here today. Thunder and big lightning on the way home! I had to actually close the windows AND put on sweats this evening. HALLELUJAH! I love sweats.
On a slightly less positive note, apparently neither big dog is smart enough to come in out of the rain. They were both soaked to the bone and required some serious towel time to gain entrance to the inside of the house.

2. Wolfgang’s Vault had a concert with Mahavishnu Orchestra from 1973 in their e-mail update today. It’s awesome and Wolfgang’s Vault has a nice interface for listening to these jewels. I LOVE how timeless music has become — or has it always been like that? The medium is magic now.

3. Coolest sentence of the day: “She heard a note being slipped under her hotel door and she experienced the universal mammalian atavistic fear response to nest invasion.”
Hell, I thought it was just me.

That sentence was from William Gibson’s latest book, Spook Country (and I probably misquoted because I’m listening to it, not reading it). I finished it today, and it was extraordinary. As always. I suppose I’ll have to listen to it again right away. His descriptions awe me and rock my world.

4. AAAARRR, Matey! I only got to exchange Piratese with one person at work today. Scurvy Wench beat me to the punch, too. The rest of the day I totally forgot about it in my quest to make the database drop trou for me.

5. Biggest Boner Award (and I don’t mean boner in a good way) Of The Week:
We had to change our door locks today at work and get new keys for everyone.
It seems that our alarm company had a big bag of keys with all their customer addresses and passwords in a company truck. The bag got stolen. Oh, my. Somebody’s gonna get their ass chewed for that. Whew!