Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Derigging and frozen brakes

Well I had a good day today, it was sunny and warm and I spent the day taking the yachts mast off and derigging it and getting the boat ready to put on her trailer for the winter. I could have been out sailing but mucking about on the boat is the next best thing. One of the brakes on the trailer was jammed on so I had to to take the wheel off and use the Irish screwdriver ( hammer) to sort that out. This year I have taken the spreaders off the mast and totally derigged it instead of just dropping the thing into its cradle and leaving the wires on. Its better doing it this way as everything gets inspected properly even though it takes longer.

The rubber dingy was deflated and I moved the other trailer onto the down ramp to the shed where I had the yacht trailer all summer so it is out of the way there. I will put the bikes and dingy in it and cover it with a tarp as the shed is pretty full.

I am hoping to get my Mom and Dad down for a visit in the next couple of weeks I was looking around at all the things that have been done since they were here last and they include the new septic tank and percolation area, a new down ramp to the shed, new gravel on the widened driveway, new doors and windows, new paint on the exterior of the house, a new bathroom and two bathrooms with new tiles on the floor, A wall removed in a bathroom, kitchen tiled and a new ceiling and archway between it and the living room, new stove, wood floors in the living room, central heating from the new log burner, insulation in the ceiling, most rooms stripped of wallpaper and painted and lots of trees and bushes either chopped down or trimmed. Not bad going really.

Working on a website for Galway Cardiology department at the moment and still have Corrib agricultural and environmental services, Balinasloe garden center, Irish Connemara Ponies, a builder and a couple of others still to get back to me with content for their sites, if they would I would be quite busy lol.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The skitter chase

Well what a morning I have had so far. Woke up and had a nice hot shower and waddled through to the living room to find that at least one of the dogs hadn't made it through the night without a toilet break actually they hadn't made it through without 12 and it was in a nice spray format. I was gagging. A roll of kitchen roll and a quick mop let me get a lot of the furniture out  then I set to work disinfecting the place. This is deckhands work, anyway the chase bit was when I was trying to get young Ben outside he kept running around through the spray effect adding to it probably cos he was scared at my expletives poor wee  &*$%^£$%. He managed to get out into the hallway "ohh nooooooooo" ohh yes and then into the laundry the spare bedroom and the porch leaking all the way.

I haven't had breakfast yet dont feel quite up to it yet, I'm trying to think what gave him such a bad case and am putting it down to Rowan berries as I noticed yesterday both him and Jessy were busy eating them when I was working outside. The two big dogs are on a bit of a diet but he was still underweight I guess he is even more underweight this morning.

Stripped the wallpaper off my office walls and gave it a coat of paint over the last couple of days so it is fresher but my elbow was aching like mad by the time I had finished the cold weather makes it ache too so I may keep a look out for a support sleeve thing see if that will help, I am kind of sore in a lot of my joints so am wondering if I should ask the Dr to up my prendisone drug as it gave me these symptoms when I was weening off it in Australia and the arthritis expert thought it was because my body wasn't producing enough of its own steroids anymore. Old age doesn't come alone, it comes with dog doodaa apparently.

Monday, September 16, 2013

another wild day

Well its still blowing hard here with intermittent heavy showers and sunny breaks, I,m in and out of the house like a yoyo and the dogs are covered in mud from the soil spreading.
Listening to Radio Scotland and the World Service online in the showers, there was a good discussion on wind farming on the other day and it was interesting to see that 99% of the people phoning in were anti wind farms. The spokesman / expert was of course a government employed (so therefore pro wind) wally who came out with the same old rhetoric that we hear all the time like the huge amounts of jobs that will be created, how wind farming produces no Co2  etc etc all total lies. There has been no news about the wind farm here but then again they can stall for as long as they like I suppose.

Angie is at a First aid course today it must be about the tenth one she has done, the last one I did was the Ship Masters First aid which was much more in depth, giving intravenous injections and the like. When you do the basic first aid over and over it gets a bit boring, mind you they change CPR every course you go to, weird seeing the position of the heart hasn't changed recently. She is going offshore (England) tomorrow for a couple of days.

I should go change the bedsheets here till the sun comes out again.

Not many boats in

Well it dried up for a couple of hours so I got 5 barrow loads of soil spread and  a few punnets of brambles gathered, Angie is making a bramble / apple tart for desert as I type. I also went down and checked the boat moorings, she is fine and sheltered in my wee corner of the marina, below is the oyster yacht I mentioned in my previous post and some boats in the harbour today, I thought there would be more considering the weather but they may well be sheltering in the Aran Islands as it is 2 hours closer to the fishing grounds and probably more craic there.

He has renewed the standing stainless rigging and had her sand blasted and checked for osmosis which she passed with flying colours, the self furler was damaged by sun and rain exposure so he had to buy a new sail there but the rest have hardly had any use. She is the sort of boat you could sail anywhere, wish she was mine. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

First gale of the autumn

Sitting here watching the trees bend in the wind through the horizontal rain thinking how lucky I am to not be living in a cardboard box in an alley somewhere. It is amazing how flexible the trees are. I,m glad I got a sail in yesterday and the grass cut, I caught some fish and had them all nicely filleted and cleaned at the marina, put them in a plastic bag at the tap on my berth where I had been cleaning them and got distracted, I got talking to a fellow sailor who had taken a berth in the marina for the winter with his Oyster yacht. His boat ( I went for an inspection) was owned by Celtic Tiger NAMA champagne swillers who had treated her really badly (the last 6 years she has been on a hard stand with all running rigging flogging away to a thread) so he got her for a song and he is in the process of getting her back into shape. The boat in good nick would sell for £180,000 he got her for £25,000 and she has huge potential. Anyway by the time I had been into every nook and cranny on his boat and walked back to the tap the gulls had removed and polished off all my fish.

The marina has a tame or sort of tame Atlantic Grey seal about 250kg, yesterday he was about a foot under the water waiting for me to drop the fish carcasses into the water, he ended up taking the fish out of my hand when I dangled them in the water. Was quite enchanting looking into its eyes wondering what was going through its mind. Probably thinking how glad he wasn't living in a cardboard box in an alley somewhere.

I think a fire is in order here so am away to set one.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Putin in your money's worth

Well I was not a fan of President Putin's dealings with the Chechen republic but his NY times article regarding America and Syria makes a lot of sense. Why is it  that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States? In my opinion it should be the United Nations that do any policing of the worlds affairs. Anyway that out of the way what else is happening? hmmm not an awful lot really, I got a 2nd hand PC tower and have it connected to my TV and surround sound, this lets me get Netflix programs now which are heaps cheaper than Sky tv. I can also use it to play music etc etc.

Today is misty and calm, great midgie weather again, the last couple of days I have managed to get a bit of soil spread so the front of the house is almost ready for grass seed. There were a lot of stones and weeds in the soil so it needed a lot of raking, I still have about a ton left to go out of the 16 tons.

I see Sydney has a lot of bush fires already this year, they are early and I hope they don't have a really bad bushfire year this year, they seem to follow cycles, I suppose the undergrowth gets a few years to build up a fuel then a dry summer and wooosh the whole place is ablaze. I couldn't have a garden like mine in Australia it would be full of snakes and spiders and be a huge fire hazard.

George and Gail are setting sail from Cairns tomorrow for a 4-6 day sail across to the Lousinaides then they spend a month or so in the islands there cruising around in a flotilla of yachts. There is a girl from Skye going with them as crew who does a lot of sailing, I think she arrives from Scotland just hours before they have to clear customs so there is some anticipation to say the least. I hope they have a good sail in nice weather as I think my sister in law is a bit scared and it would be nice for them to have a quiet first cruise up to now they have just been port hopping up the coast. There is nothing like the clear sky at night out of sight of land doing a watch at sea in calmish conditions.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Wallpaper stripping

I spent a good part of the morning stripping paper off the walls in my office here which is one of the rooms I haven't done any work on decorating, looking around the interior of the house needs done again. I shall let the walls dry out properly and fill some wee cracks before painting this time I'm an awful hasher when it comes to decorating I need it finished today. The reason I was decorating today is not due to bad weather, its a nice calm dry day out, its just the midgies are awful out there, over the weekend I took down a tree and ripped out a big bush and I had to cover up entirely because of the wee bugs, that meant long sleeves, my sun hat with the wrap around neck face flap, glasses and gloves. I put a lot of the tree through the mulcher and the big bush got dumped behind the percolation area (out of sight out of mind). Its easy cutting trees down its getting rid of all the small branches that is hard.

I had enquiries from a cardiologist and a flower shop for websites over the weekend turns out the cardiologist was one I visited myself in Galway, he is in the private sector but I had to go public when I discovered the battery and surgery for my ICD would not be covered by medical insurance as it is an "existing condition" and I have to have the insurance for 5 years to qualify and the thing will be due to be replaced soon. I get a lot of enquiries about websites, some pay a fee I ask for before starting work and then I either never hear from them again or they call back 6 months to two years down the track. Thats Ireland for you.

If you are like me you will get fed up with the news as it very rarely contains anything apart from misery and suffering. I was glad to come across a website that does the opposite its at www.upworthy.com and it has motivational and emotional news videos I particularly liked this advert that Rupert Murdoch tried to have banned from Aussie TV on the run up to the elections down there as it is really Australian Mate http://www.upworthy.com/nice-try-banning-this-advert-rupert-murdoch-but-australia-can-watch-it-here-instead

My skype phone is down at the moment as my credit card was renewed and the expiry date etc changed, so the skype and other direct debits from it all stopped working. Other ways to contact me are by email robshairp@gmail.com or on my mobile 0871615645 or by skype on the computer or you could shout loudly over the front wall I suppose, so I am not total incommunicado.