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November 30, 2004

Server died . . . again!

A bit of a mystery. I came home to find my server had died again. I suspect the UPS. It seems like when they get old, they cause service interruptions instead of prevent them. This one is over four years old, so I think it is time for a replacement.

The last problem was the power supply. It has been replaced now and it was definitely faulty.

November 29, 2004

Happy Birthday Bunty!

Bunty, aka my Mom, has her birthday today! Officially it is her eighty-eighth, at least that's what she says. I, however, remember sneaking a look at her old British passport many years ago which puts her at ninety. She says it is a mistake. She has since gotten a new (American) passport which supports her side.



November 27, 2004

Service Interruption

Sometime after 3:36 this afternoon the power supply in my server gave up. Since you are reading this, it is back up since I just got finished replacing it with a fresh, new one. When I keep the server in my spare bedroom along with various other belongings, it is my responsibility to maintain it and fix it. Too bad I don't check things very frequently because it has been out for seven hours!

At least it waited until I got back from Minnesota!

Waaah! I wanna do-over to my election too!

Back to reality.

The trip back to Indy was totally uneventful. All flights were early. I sat in the exit row for both flights, thus garnering extra room for my 235 pound 6'3" frame. Each flight was only about 20% full, sorry American. The only bad bit was the 2+ hour layover at O'Hare, but I knew that was coming. It was the absolute opposite of last Wednesday's adventure. I like seeing my niece and the rest of the family, unfortunately I didn't really have enough time with them, but so it goes.

November 25, 2004

It took forever...

but I finally made it to Rochester MN a few minutes after Midnight last night (Central Time). After getting to O'Hare from Indianapolis, I found out that they cancelled the flight to Rochester as well as many other flights. It seems like they had a hard time with less than an inch of wet, slushy snow! I did not want to spend the night at O'Hare, so I started looking for a flight out, either on to Rochester or back to Indianapolis. Finally I got one on to Rochester, but it turned out to be a comedy of errors.

When we boarded and got seated, they announced that we needed to have some fuel offloaded because we were over gross. They also said we needed to be de-iced. Fine. It took three hours to do both those tasks. Meanwhile we sat in the tube, packed in like sardines on that Embraer Regional Jet. But, despite the delays, everyone was in a "Holiday" mood and they all took it in stride.

The Review

I didn't think there was all that much snow.

November 24, 2004

Mixed precip all day

Starting to get ready for my trip to Minnesota today. It is raining out now with a little wind. The rain/snow line is over ORD which is my first destination. I leave in about five hours so I will get to see how things are developing around ORD at that time. If there are delays getting into ORD they will hold up on the gound here in IND. It is only the busiest travel day of the year today, that's why I picked it!

November 23, 2004

Looks like IMC all the way

It's the delays that I hate. Solid snow will really play havoc with flights and cause cancellations. Tomorrow will be mixed precip at IND, ORD and RST - well maybe RST will be clear because the WX approaches from that direction, so it will be human delays more than the WX. Heck, it was clear with a 5000' ceiling, broken when I went to LHR a few weeks ago, and we sat holding short of RWY 32 here in IND for 20 mins waiting for clearance! That's the kind of stuff that can ruin your day!

November 22, 2004

Gasoline jungle drums

So how do all the gas (filling) stations coordinate the ups and downs of their pump prices? It does seem to follow a pattern. Down on Monday, then stays the same until Thursday. Then they shoot up all at once. (for the weekend, I guess) Somehow they all, regardless of brand, seem to get the message at the same instant. When there is an impending holiday, they stay expensive until it is over. This process must be covert because I am sure it is illegal.

Cold and rainy

Just the kind of day where the nicest thing to do is to roll over and grab another hour's sleep. I am so glad I do not have to go out in it and walk a dog. Even the dog would try and "hold it" on a day like today. Looking on the bright side, it could be snow.

When I was a kid I used to like snow. After all, if it snowed enough I would get out of going to school, plus have all that pristine environment to play around in. I think all those years working for the bus company really put me off the stuff. Snow = havoc in those days, whereas now it's not so critical, but I never recaptured the youthful fondness for snow.

November 21, 2004

Rochester, oh, Rochester!

I just checked the WX forecast for Rochester Minnesota for the upcoming week - not too great! I have been up there on Thanksgiving when it has snowed. Also when the temp was -12F. I have had flights cancelled and headaches aplenty just for a two day trip.

These past two years, I have flown into Rochester from ORD instead of MSP, my reasoning being if I can get to ORD, I can get back to IND even if I have to drive - it's only a three hour drive. The other way, I would be trapped in MSP with nowhere to stay if it gets nasty. Of course, I can stay extra time with my niece in Rochester if I have to. Oh well, no need to panic just yet, Wednesday is still a few days away.

November 19, 2004

Raining cats and dogs . . .

And speaking of dogs, there are a pair of the unmannerly beasts in No. 17. Every time so much as a leaf rustles, or a squirrel passes, those buggers start to bark when their owners aren't there. It is quite unnerving to try to get any work done when all I hear is incessant "bark" "bark" "bark" coming through the wall. I used to like dogs, but my patience is wearing thin.

Rain in the neighborhood...

November 18, 2004

No point to this

But it has been a few days, so I figured I'd make an entry. The WX (weather) in Indy is unseasonably warm at the mo. I am hoping for the same this time next week when I travel to Minnesota - Minnesota can be a bear with the WX. I remember one Thanksgiving when it was 12-below! Brr!

Time for lunch now. Taco salad is on the menu followed by a walk to another downtown office to pick up a book someone bought for me.

November 16, 2004

Moving right along

It has been a very productive day so far and it is only lunchtime! I enjoy being productive, can't you tell?

November 14, 2004

New tunes!

Went to Best Buy yesterday with Katie and found a later, but similar model to the defective radio that was already in my car. It was the last one in the shop, so I pounced! It fit like a glove and now I have static-free AM and FM! Very pleased, but it is an annoying silver color, not black like the rest of the dash, so I will have to bother to remove the face or risk tempting thieves.

November 13, 2004

Listening to Radio 4

The panel of Brits are rinsing "W" and Blair over the whole Iraq thing and the election. They are right, America is an "enormously divided country" over the present issues.

In other news, Thanksgiving approaches. I have my plane ticket for the annual Thanksgiving trip to Rochester Minnesota to see my niece and her family. I need a new radio for my car. Yesterday's troubleshooting reveals that the tuner section of the radio is to blame for the static noise, not the antenna or ground connection. So I might just take a trip to Best Buy, or someplace and shop for a replacement this afternoon.

November 12, 2004

Ladies and gentlemen, start your weekend!

I am going to knock off a little early today. Things are quiet and under control. My car radio is emitting some annoying scratchy noises. It sounds like the antenna connection is loose somewhere because it plays tapes with perfect audio, so I am going to troubleshoot it while it is still daylight.

Must be the season for car troubles. My cousin just had his in for a faulty cold start switch. I have a busy week coming up starting Monday. Everybody is rinsing their budget before the end of the year, so I have a slew of work to do.

November 11, 2004

Car repair mishap

Recently, while I was in England, I left my car with the mechanic to have some work done. They replaced the alternator, which was only putting out enough current to darken the idiot light, but not charge the battery properly. Also they fixed a cooling system leak and replaced the faulty thermostat, flushed and filled the radiator. Well, they got carried away with the coolant. I used the window washers yesterday and noticed it was spraying antifreeze!

November 10, 2004

Duchess to grow cannabis, opium and cocaine

The Duchess of Northumberland has won permission to grow cannabis, opium, magic mushrooms and cocaine.

The Duchess has been given Home Office approval to grow drugs for educational purposes in her garden at Alnwick Castle.

The Times says visitors will be able to admire - but not pick - marijuana plants, opium poppies, magic mushrooms, tobacco and the coca plant, the source of cocaine.

They will take their place alongside 50 other dangerous plants in what will be Britain's largest public poison garden.

The Duchess said: "The Poison Garden will offer a new avenue, outside the classroom, to get people talking about the misuse of drugs, most of which grow in nature.

"I am interested in the power of plants and how they have been used not only to cure but to poison and kill."

. . . yeah, right!

A normal night

I had to work on Sue's wireless router last night. I got home around 10:30 so I went to bed at a proper time. Plus I had a cup of coffee at about 7:30-8 which helped me through the install. I was able to get the ADSL and the router installed and her Windows updated to SP2. I went to bed at about 12:30 and woke up at 6:08 this morning. Sorted!

There are a few database projects in the works for ILS so I will be able to get started today. I may even get them finished if I don't get too busy.

. . . so what else did you expect?

At least two members of Iraqi interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi's family have been kidnapped, according to government officials and sources close to the family. A group called Ansar al-Jihad is claiming responsibility for the kidnappings on a Web site. The group says the hostages will be beheaded within 48 hours unless all Iraqi prisoners are released and attacks on Falluja are stopped.

November 09, 2004

Sleep pattern still a mess

I got up, wide awake, at 3:38 AM this morning. I have been home a week so I am wondering what's going on? I tend to fall asleep around 9:00 PM in front of the TV and that's what messes me up. I used to stay up until around 11:30 PM without nodding. Getting old is what Katie says. I guess she's right. Damn!

November 07, 2004

I am up way early again

I suppose it's because I have been home less than a week. It takes me a week to adjust to being in London on their time, no reason it shouldn't take the same amount of adjustment going the other way. Although at first, I seem to adjust more quickly coming back.

It is Sunday. I will not do much work today, but I will be back at it tomorrow. I have a few TiVoed programs to watch today from when I was away.

I went to brunch with Katie yesterday and then to WalMart. She has taken up crochet so we got some yarn for her to crochet with there. It was good to see her again after my trip. Her jobs have been keeping her busy so between that and school, I don't get to see her as much these days.

*yawn* - maybe I will go back to bed for a few hours.

November 05, 2004

Guy Fawkes

Happy Bonfire Night to all the Brits out there. I was there for Nov 5 last year, but I came back three days early this year. Glad I did because I have been humping like crazy since I've been back.

My cousin Lydia hates fireworks so we didn't do much in that way last year. I love them, but I got my fill on July 4. My mother hates them as well - they bring back too many memories of getting bombed during the second world war.

November 04, 2004

John Peel

RIP John Peel

November 03, 2004

Back in the US (again)

I haven't read my mail yet, but I scanned it to see if there was anything interesting. I have been drifting around all day stretching out my little vacation. I haven't watched much TV - I am sick of politics.

I was touched by Joz's post about her grandmother. I realize I don't have too much to do with my family, but my trips to England are really about family. I play the go-between role and try to see all of the members when I can.

Family and friends in England.

Ownership quiz

25 %

My weblog owns 25 % of me.
Does your weblog own you?

November 02, 2004

Leaving England

Three hours left until my mini-cab comes to whisk me off to terminal 3 Heathrow. My family over here is great for putting up with my self-centered singleness for the past 10 days. We had a good time! Email and telephone is fine, but there is nothing like going on a walk somewhere, or having coffee or tea with the folks.

November 01, 2004

Last full day of England

Tomorrow afternoon I return to the US. As usual I want to stay here, but duty calls and I have tasks to perform. I will spend today visiting my host's nursery school. I like the little English kiddies. Then a spot of lunch and a visit to the high street for some last minute shopping. We have a lamb dinner planned for tonight. Then most of my packing so as not to be rushed tomorrow.