goodies on the pole
Wednesday, March 16 2005
The other day I received the antenna rotator I'd ordered online, yet another important component of the stationary WiFi access point scanning apparatus I'm building. Yesterday evening I'd dragged home a suitable antenna pole cannibalized from the ruins of the abandoned go cart track back in the woods. The pole was actually an inch and a quarter wide industrial-grade electrical service mast, one section of which was steel and the other of which was aluminum.
Today I began work attaching antenna goodies to the shorter, aluminum section of the pole. The most important of these was the 24 dB parabolic 2.4 GHz antenna. Next I attached the antenna rotator to the bottom of the mast. It's a robust rotator powered by a small but well-leveraged DC motor, connected to a controller over a three-wire cable, though I don't know how it works. The final necessary part of the pole was a spot for hanging, powering, and sheltering electronic equipment. I built in a genuine duplex grounded outlet and included a small wooden surface for attaching a DWL-800AP+ (reflashed to become a DWL-810+).
This evening Gretchen and I went out to eat with our friend Tony at Gigi's Trattoria, the best restaurant in Rhinebeck. On Wednesdays Gigi's has a special 30% off deal on wine that is popular with local food enthusiasts.
With Toni tonight was one of his friends and that friend's daughter, and the daughter happened to be friends with our waitress. We dined in a cozy little back room having one wall stacked high with wines and olive oils and others painted with murals of bucolic scenes from non-arid parts of Italy.
In comparison to regional standards, our dinner companions were unusually "normal," the kind we don't normally socialize with unless we're visiting Gretchen's relatives in Long Island. By "normal" I mean they all had conventional white collar jobs (Tony's friends are both lawyers), they ate normal food (steak and chicken but also calamari), and they had fairly mainstream political views (somewhat Democratic, in the way that the average person in New York State tends to be). Tony's friend had attempted to date a woman with a fondness for Bill O'Reilly and it hadn't worked out.
At some point Gretchen was telling everybody about my ability to eat just about anything without the slightest digestive difficulty and Tony asked if I was German, because Germans, he over-generalized, can eat anything. Yes, Gretchen and I admitted, I am about half German. But then I added, "The Germans are a gentle people." This bit of absurdity was an in-joke between Gretchen and myself, a reference to our recent trip to Ecuador. The nice British ladies we'd met in Amazonia kept patronizingly observing, "The [Ecuadorians] are a gentle people." But doesn't every people seem gentle until the actions of its members give you reason to change your mind?
For linking purposes this article's URL is:feedback
previous | next