it's getting hot down there
Monday, February 10 2014
Conditions were sunny enough that temperatures in the greenhouse upstairs reached into the upper 80s. Gretchen was down there for awhile and it was so hot that she took off all her clothes like in that song by Nelly. Finally having a weather station capable of remotely monitoring temperatures in the greenhouse allows me to definitively tell Gretchen whether or not she will be comfortable going down there to read. I've also learned another interesting thing: temperatures in the greenhouse upstairs don't fall much below 30 degrees Fahrenheit even on the coldest nights. (Given the large windows and absence of much thermal mass, I'd expected temperatures to fall well into the teens.)
I took a break from my procrastination at some point and went down to the greenhouse basement, where I found that there was no longer any standing water in the west end of the excavation. I proceeded to jackhammer it in a few places, and though I produced a fair amount of fine grey dust that thankfully didn't float much up into the air, I failed to break up anything very large. That bottom layer of bluestone with its mangled, twisted layers is proving so hard that even the jackhammer might be insufficient for breaking it up (at least in a timely manner). It's still a bit difficult to say because there are low spots with mud in them that are unpleasant to attack, though those might be the key weakpoints for unlocking and disassembling the layer.
This evening Gretchen went to do some volunteer literacy work at the Ulster County Women's jail. She loves working in prisons and has missed doing so since being pushed out of the Bard Prison Initiative back in May of 2012. She found the attitude of the prisoners amusing on her first day of volunteering; they regarded her as a naïve newbie, with no sense of the toughness of prison life. They had no idea Gretchen had worked for years in a maximum security state men's prison.
Before Gretchen returned home, I made a large pot of chili. During Jeopardy, we only ate a small fraction of it.
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