May. 8th, 2017

jbvb: (pic#51664908 hiking)
With MiekeC's help, my lawn is cleared off, the flowering crab apple pruned and clover seeded in some bare spots. Feeling the soil in those spots told me it was short of organic material. First step is to get with the guys I've been paying to mow my lawn and see if I can clarify that the only time I want their grass catchers in use is when they're within 5 meters of open windows. No trees cut for firewood till the stored cars are out of the barns.

Pawpaw flowers are opening - maybe 1/4 have turned purple and a few leaves are pushing out. Apples in full flower, with pretty complete coverage on most of the trees. Lilacs open enough to draw bees.

One upcoming trip was booked today, another is firming up. Heard my Chief Dispatcher AP paperwork went to NMRA National more than a month ago, but they haven't processed it yet. Some progress on Structures, but still a week of evenings' work before I'd request an evaluation. My NER Director term is up in the Fall, and someone else wants the job so I'm not running again.

Oil tank down to 1/8; expecting it to be cheaper to run it empty and get a new filter than pay someone to pump out my old oil and take it away when the replacement tank is ready.

Working on new benchwork for the layout, in between volunteerism: Got the USGS and FEMA to agree that part of $hometown$ had never been flood-mapped, and that something should be done. Helped work on track at Seashore using really big wrenches, pry bars and hammers. Then re-fastened their anvil to its stump. Turns out they occasionally use a 19 kg sledge on it, and the anvil & stump together weigh maybe 150 kg.

Many birthdays this month. Made Middle (son) a birthday dinner mid-week - roast pork shoulder of a cut I'd never carved before. Lovely meat enjoyed by all. I've been dining on leftovers since (big roast). I heated one night's in a pan and liked it a lot. Then nuked it next night and not nearly so tasty. Plenty left, so I'll try the pan again tomorrow.

Insight to the Honda dealer to diagnose an IMA fault. The people-facing person said the assist battery should be replaced, but the diagnosis sheet says 'may need'. Took much longer than I was told to expect, little communication of progress, short-handed, apparent diversion of resources from reassembling the Insight to other work. Finally, I just stood in front of her desk till I was given my keys back, as I had to get to a scheduled meeting. I will ask elsewhere about fixing a minor fault, then drive it (still gets good gas mileage) a while and try my own hand at reading the codes in a week or two.


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