Sunday, January 28, 2018

Cabin Fever 2018

Once again, Bob and crew hosted Cabin Fever at Scooterville, a nice break in January weather and a chance at some very good deals on Guzzi's, Vespa's, Piaggio and Kymco scooters.  As with previous C.F's, there were some used scooters outside on the cold sidewalk with some VERY attractive price tags.  Last year I almost left with one, this year I was tempted but showed some "adultness" as Mike calls it, enough of that to avoid going inside and asking about them.

As far as I know, none of the machines outside sold while we were there but inside Bob was barely able to keep up with those signing papers.  I know for a fact that a couple of Guzzi's found new owners in the short time that we were there.

Some of you even know the guy that bought this V7 Guzzi, a fantastic deal (it was NOT me).

Home in the afternoon and then in the evening, we went up into the State Park.

It was cool and the wind was brisk,  we walked a short ways and not really dressed for it, returned to the car.  It was great to see so many people outside and enjoying themselves on a cold January evening.

Out in the garage early, it was finally Honda SL100 day....again.  I'm struggling to get the cases apart...

Mike's technical term for the kickstart shaft...."tackers"'s all of that and the reason all of the little holes are not filled with screws.

Cooler temps predicted over the next couple of weeks but little snow....all OK by me.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Only Sort Of Potpourri

I think I've blogged with the potpourri word before but this time I've actually got something that smells.

Besides fresh smelling herbs and formerly live plants, I see that a synonym is "medley".  There's a good mix here of the latter..."fresh" isn't exactly the word most would use to describe some of the musty old smelling things I've been going through collections of lately.  Luckily, what I'm sharing here is the best part(s), the images.  You'll have to use your imagination for the scent.

First though, earlier today and the reason I came home early from work.

I thought this purple 'pin stripe' line, sleet, delineating the delta between snow and rain was almost too good.  I don't remember ever seeing a buffer showing such a perfect width; something I would have to do in CAD to get this level of perfection.

 And now.....according to Accuweather, 27 minutes until the snow ceases.  I guess we know which way the winds are blowing, don't we?

Something not as recent but much more so than what follows below, this photo that was taken by my brother in 1974 in the wilds around Avery, ID and not far from the St. Joe River.  I don't remember ever being in the photo, didn't remember that my brother had his camera and how I ever found it in my Great Aunt's things is an even bigger question.  My brother obviously gave this to Aunt Anna, framed under glass and everything.  I'm there in my blue 3/4 helmet on my 1970 Yamaha AT1 Enduro in a jean jacket I'm sure.  I can say with authority, though the photo can't corroborate, that my brother was on his 1970 SL100 Honda.

We were there as a family of 4, visiting one of my dad's cousin's family's, the cousin working for the US Forest Service.  Brother Kevin was so enthralled with the place (perfectly understandable) that he went back the following year as a summer employee.

(How we ever got back to camp without a GPS will forever be a mystery.)

Now we're down to the aromatic stuff....From the 1941 end of year Red Wing Newspaper, the Daily Republican Eagle (still being published!).  I've seen all of these old photos at the local County Historical Society but I didn't have to go out in the cold and nasty to share them; they're right here on top of a big box.

Red Wing built a spiral bridge over the river in the 1890's, replaced by our current Eisenhower Bridge in 1960 and now in 2018, a new bridge is being built, something I've blogged about previously.

This the Hastings bridge but it was almost the same as the one downriver in Red Wing.

Photo courtesy of the Mpls Star and Tribune

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Just Another Saturday??

I think not.

Coffee with the folks at Diamond's to start things off at 7AM.

Coffee drinker Tom B is helping me determine if any of our old tools are worthy of being in someone's collection so what felt like 200# of them were sent his way for valuation.

From Mpls coffee it was off to breakfast with the Minnesota Guzzi folks....

After shipping a bunch of Ebay items while the P.O was still open and then home....I got out.....felt almost too good to describe!!  With these balmy temps, she popped right off.  After the wind chills we put up with for a week, this felt Spring mild.  I dressed like I normally would/will for 60 degrees.

 Frontenac Beach....and out on to thickly frozen Lake Pepin (Mississippi River). 

Ice Fisher People aplenty....Wisconsin in the distance.  I have no idea how thick the ice was here but I wasn't in the least bit worried.  You can see the vehicles avoiding parking-lot-style spacing.

Looking down river...

There was an ultralight in the distance but somehow I completely missed it!!

Then it was up into the State Park with my Annual Permit and parking next to a blue Ford that I know.

Zoomed in tight, almost perfectly centered in this photo, just above the brush beyond me, an SUV parked next to their fish house.  It must be a very good year for thick ice.  I just don't remember there being this many houses, vehicles and people so far away from shore out where the main channel is.

(Has Prairie Island stopped sending warm cooling tower water downstream??)

I made a loop through the campground and then was on my way back home.  That blue Ford previously mentioned was there because Lauren was up in the park for a hike and 'got' me as I was leaving the campground section.

I've been thinking about this off and on all week; this being the fact that age is a tide that we all must deal with.  There are times we seem to rise with it, other phases of our moons when we may just slide back a bit.  Some of us do it with more grace than others, but thankfully we all get our chance at it for shorter or longer periods of time.  Personally, I'm quite content with where I've been and currently seem to be.

What got these thoughts going this past week was time spent watching Leo Kottke videos online.  Mr. Kottke might very well have been the first live concert I attended and early on certainly had his name on the most vinyl albums in what later became a substantial collection of mine.

I accept and expect most of us to age and make way for those behind us.  I do wish there was a way for me to keep Mr. Kottke, his fingers and hands young for a very long time.....the way I remember him even 20 years ago, let alone almost 50.

Four rows back, front and center.....

I wasn't the only one in the crowd with 45+ years of Kottke listening experience; we were by far a vast majority of much experience.  He led off with Pamela Brown and ended with Ring Ring Telephone Ring.  Leo was wearing nice socks tonight.  They were short.  They were French.

Definitely one of my favorites,  Ring Ring Telephone Ring followed by Jack Fig....

Corrina, Corrina certainly in my top 5.....

If you haven't heard his Eight Miles High, give that a look.

I have been fortunate enough to have some dandy January Saturday's but this one has been a standout; hope yours was as well!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Little Help??

I've done my best but way, way better than that, I've had a couple of my friends that ARE good at this sort of sleuthing trying to help me figure this out.  We've got hints, a couple of hunches (which I won't divulge here to prevent sending things off in a wrong direction) of rough ideas of where this item's origins are.

It was in my dad's sister's things but that isn't really much of a clue.  She spent her entire life living with her parents, didn't get out much on her own and for all I know, didn't correspond independently with people outside of close family and family friends.  My best guess is that this is either something that was given to her or as in many of the discoveries I've been making in clearing out mom and dad's house, this is something that belonged or was given to her mother or dad (my grandparents).

As I've been mentioning, Gramp was never overseas, instead serving his country in Georgia and Indiana during the first World War and I don't think this is the City Seal from Terre Haute but then I shouldn't be assuming anything!

So, this is the piece of gold-colored jewelry that I found in one drawer of auntie's jewelry box.  Anyone out there in Radioland recognize the symbols, the meaning, the origin, club, organization, group, .....anything?

If you can provide a clue or know someone else that might help, I'd sure appreciate hearing about it.  Not that big of deal in the grand scheme of things but I've become very curious about this.

On a more relevant front, it's cold, it's snowy and things are happening in the garage but that's not all.  The State of Minnesota got richer today.  The way I've done it in the past and how I expect to do it the machines come into the shop to get ship-shape for Spring, their 'reward' is an updated license tab.  No one gets a sticker until they've been processed.  There are a few machines with plates designated CLASSIC which means they are perpetually Good To Go and don't get these trophies.

Then there's this.....

Basecamp remains in place on the Desktop, mapping, roads, campsites, Places Of Interest are accumulating as the daylight grows.

Added 1/19 -------

Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy New Year - 2018!!

We've had a very nice holiday week here; hope that you have as well.  I worked 3 days last week and will again this week and it would be so nice if it were the New Norm.  Already very comfortable with the longer weekends, they could continue as far as I'm concerned.

It was very cold in Fargo last Wednesday morning at 6:30 AM when I got to our customer's location.  After 2 days, it was nice to return to (then) balmy southern Minnesota.

Not much family traveling for us this time, lots of home time which is always a preference.  Eating was conducted with vigor and our traditional Christmas Eve marinated chicken wings quite possibly the best ever.  Both grandmothers were expected though neither made it, both of them hoping for warmer and healthier weather.  Two of our daughters made it and it was wonderful to meet Katlyn's new friend James.

My favorite Christmas present was from daughter Lauren,  her rendition of me on a gentle slope....

Between sorting and cleaning out mom's house, the holidays and what seems like almost any and everything else, there has been NO garage time so far this cold season.  I vowed a change on that front this week and only during the very last couple of days in '17 did it happen.

Cam chain tightener parts where they don't belong....

Carburetor parts getting some ultrasound waves, first rinse.

I just today finished up my annual holiday read's, Roughneck Grace was this year's last of the three.  I read it in small bites, a couple of columns at a time to savor it, taking most of December to do so.

Roughneck Grace: Farmer Yoga, Creeping Codgerism, Apple Golf and Other Brief Essays from On and Off the Back Forty

This morning's weather report, very closely resembling tomorrow's predicted weather report, though we are looking for some moderation mid-week.  The wind hadn't started yet when I was out to feed the cats.  It picked up later and unless you were in sheltered sunshine, it felt about like this all day.

Rides, rallies and recreational enjoyment plans for the season have begun and if you haven't tried it as a way to make winter pass more quickly, give it a go.

Wishing everyone...visitors, friends and family the very best in 2018!!