Snow, ice, and off-road excursions

Last weekend Miss D. and I drove to a seminar held at a lakeside resort east of Gainesville, TX.  Unfortunately, that coincided with the arrival of a rare snowstorm.  Our normally safe roads were suddenly covered with 2-3 inches of snow, with patches of ice forming beneath the snow, invisible until you hit it. This was US Highway 82 near Gainesville at about 8 AM on Saturday morning.  The photograph looks clearer than conditions actually were, and doesn’t capture the snow falling fairly thickly.  The car was distinctly “twitchy” over the slush in the tire ruts. A drive that normally takes 2 hours took

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Sunset over the Northern plains

Courtesy of Daily Timewaster, here’s a beautiful time-lapse video of sunset over Bowdon, North Dakota, in 2017.  The videographer, Mike Olbinski, writes: We were chasing northeast of Bismarck, North Dakota and as storms were dying out, we decided to go for a lone cell on the backside of a line of storms. We knew it had a hail core on it and we were hoping that we might get some nice sunset color at least on the storm as it moved past us, and hopefully some lightning bolts. But we had no idea what we were about to encounter. The clouds

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Ice on your windscreen? Three home-made solutions

Like many of us, Miss D. and I were caught in the big Arctic freeze that blew through last week.  It froze up our car windows, so that before we could drive in the mornings, we had to scrape them clear or use the car’s own defrosting mechanisms to melt the ice. Frustrated, I did a bit of searching, and came up with these three recommendations for an easy, home-made solution to car window icing. I haven’t tried them all yet, but I intend to.  I’m not real sure about the middle one – if the water’s too hot, and the windscreen

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Recovery is not as easy as I’d hoped

Following my adventures in hospital last week, I’ve been trying to get back on an even keel.  Progress has been in fits and starts, with a few more fits than I’d have preferred!  Still, I’m alive to work at it, which is a very good start. I’m on a new-fangled anticoagulant medication, because apparently the danger of blood clots in a newly-installed stent is very serious.  I’ll be on it for at least a year, and perhaps longer, depending on what my cardiologist decides.  (Affording it is going to be a problem;  it’s going to cost me hundreds of dollars a month, even

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So… how do they navigate?

I found this pair of photographs on Gab yesterday, showing a lighthouse on Lake Michigan near St. Joseph during and after a winter storm.  Clickit to biggit. I’ve seen similar photographs before, of course, as I’m sure have most of my readers.  However, I’d never thought about one obvious question.  If the lighthouse is required by ships on the lake for safe navigation, what happens when it’s shrouded in ice and its light can no longer be seen?  Is waterborne traffic suspended until it defrosts?  Is, there, in fact, any waterborne traffic on the Great Lakes during the winter months, or does everything come

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Bureaucrats and temperatures

There’s been a certain amount of hilarity hereabouts – not to mention anger – at the latest bureaucratic advice on how to deal with hot weather. The coolest temperature Americans should keep their thermostats set to is 78 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Energy Star, a federal program aimed at energy efficiency and cost savings for consumers. But many on social media do not agree with that recommendation. And social media users were even more vocal in objecting to Energy Star’s recommendation for nighttime thermostat settings. . . . Energy Star, a joint federal program run by the Department of Energy (DOE)

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Day 3 on the road: onward to Ohio

Yesterday (Tuesday) Miss D. and I rose at a leisurely hour and hit the road for the short hop from Indianapolis to Dayton, Ohio.  It’s only a couple of hours’ drive, by far the shortest leg of our journey, so we weren’t stressed for time and could relax and enjoy the sights. We were glad to see that agriculture in this part of the world is in a somewhat healthier condition than any other state we’ve been through so far this trip.  We began to see fields where planting had been accomplished, although the crops weren’t as tall as they should be

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