Sunday, October 30, 2005

Spring Water

Spring Water
Originally uploaded by sirenbrian.
I took this photo in Saratoga at one of the many natural springs there. This one actually tasted OK, but another one we tried was really awful :) !
I've switched my picture hosting from Buzznet to Flickr, simply because flickr seems to have won the battle. Buzznet was nice, but flickr has so much more traffic; using I've set up RSS feeds which get new pictures of "great dane", "melbourne" and "malta" every day from buzznet and from flickr. The buzznet stream hardly ever has pictures, while flickr can have a couple of hundred!

I've imported all my old pictures and posted some new ones, mostly taken during the recent hurricane. Look on the right side of this page and click on the link to see what other photos I've taken.

Work finally has their power back so we'll be back in the office on Monday.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The house is in good condition and our power is back on! The back gate got blown off its hinges, a few roof tiles slid off and some of our trees are looking a bit sorry for themselves, but otherwise we're unscathed.

Actually this storm gave us a soft landing, because the temperature after the hurricane passed was a very pleasant 70 degrees fahrenheit, which is the coldest its been since last winter! While the power was off we read, listened to music on Deanne's iPod and battery-powered travel speakers, I played games on my Nintendo DS in a room lit by about 30 candles. Around 10pm Deanne called me outside to see the sky; it was a spectacularly clear and starry night, so we went for a little walk with Patch and looked for satellites. During the night the power came back on and things are very close to what passes for normal :)

Pictures later on, after we've cleared out the fridge and freezer.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Hurricane Part Two
It's about 9:30am and the wind has really whipped up. We were woken up about an hour ago by the peaks in the wind; you know how you can ignore wind up to a certain speed and pitch, but something in your brain says "worry" when the speed peaks. I kept opening one eye to see if the bedroom fan was still spinning, indicating our power was still on. So far its flickered once or twice, but it's still here. The TV is out but the good ol' Internet is hanging on!

No damage or leaks in the house yet, which is great news. We'll have some breakfast and keep an eye on things. I read the *real* hurricane will pass over West Palm Beach from 10am till about 2pm, so things may crank up a little more, and I may yet get to see a hurricane eye.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Hurricane Diary Part One
If any of my family and friends are reading this to see how we cope with the storm, I suppose I'd better write something or they'll think I've been washed out to sea! Deanne and I are urgently ('pass the wine') attending to the important business of securing ('and the cheetos') our house. A trip to Home Depot and ('how about a foot rub?') the supermarket for sensible, solid supplies ('Where's my copy of "20 More Things to do in an Inflatable Raft"?') mean that we're ready for the storm.

Seriously though, it's a tiddler compared with the Category 3 storms that hit us last year. It'll probably come ashore as a Cat 2 and weaken as it crosses the state. I don't know anyone that is evacuating the area, and we get two days off work, so we're going to catch up on paperwork, footrubs etc.

In other news, we hired a public insurance adjuster to represent us when dealing with our insurance company. We're still waiting for a decision on LAST year's storm damage, and it seems that being patient and believing their representatives when they say "We'll take care of it this week" over and over again...well, it gets you nowhere. I hate being a noisy, angry customer, especially when I don't think it actually accomplishes anything...shouldn't being a nice person get you better treatment? Apparently not. So our guy is a Paperwork Judo afficionado and says things will move along smoothly from now on, which is a great relief.

There's a good breeze outside, but the main event is about 24 hours away. I'll keep posting as long as the power stays on.