Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   a 20 GB limit
Sunday, June 18 2023

location: 800 feet west of Woodworth Lake, Fulton County, NY

This after I drank my coffee, I had plans to walk up the driveway and see things up there. But when the dogs saw me put my camera around my neck, they got excited and wanted to come (which is rare for them these days). So I opted to go wherever they wanted, and the place Neville seemed to want to go was the lake. For the first time in days it was sunny and the air was warm enough for deer flies (though not too many; the squadrons of chalk-fronted corporal dragonflies were keeping them in check. Just as I arrived at the dock, I saw large bird taxiing directly towards me on the lake's surface. This was obviously a loon (and thus "Throckmorton" the Loon), since no other bird in this region requires such a production to get airborne. Loons taxi into the wind, meaning we had a westerly breeze blowing at the time. As I'd seen the loon at Twenty-Ninth Pond do, once Throckmorton was clear of the water, he proceeded to fly around the lake in a counter-clockwise direction, gradually climbing higher and higher. It took him about three orbits to get clear of the treeline (and perhaps some of the hill to the west), and then he continued westward, perhaps to land at Lake Edward or Peck Lake. Unlike the loon at Twenty-Ninth Pond, this Throckmorton didn't call out as he left. I was snapping pictures the whole time and managed to get a few of the loon in flight. Soon the dogs joined me at the dock, where I only spent a brief time before walking northwestward along the lakeshore, again to follow Neville. At some point I left the dogs on their own and headed directly back to the cabin, but of course they returned shortly thereafter.
Yesterday I'd begun the task of heavily-editing the stone connecting path (between the front-door walkway and the stone patio) using the better flagstones I'd brought with me on this trip. Today I set up a wet saw to help me cut little pieces to fit between stones. When cutting stones for this sort of task, it's important to use the cuts as a suggestion for where a break should happen; it looks bad to have rough natural pieces of bluestone mixed in with the kind of cuts one makes in pieces of tile. As I worked, I listened to some old Dinosaur Jr. and some even older Asia (I particularly like "Sole Survivor"). But I quickly learned that Asia (whose entire discography I downloaded at some point) has no good songs except on their debut album, the one played so much on the radio in the early 1980s.

After I was satisfied with the walkway project, I went under the east decks to do some more shoveling of sand in hopes of at least getting in better shape to do this on subsequent weekends. I found shoveling easier than I had on prior weekends, suggesting that my physical capabilities had already somewhat improved. It also helped that I had overhead lighting, which made it feel less like I was working in Saddam Hussein's spider hole. I managed to dig out nearly enough sand to install another panel of four by eight foot styrofoam, but I stopped short of that because I felt like I needed to guard against the collapse of the trenche's fagile walls of stacked sand. So I used some nails to attach a sheet of plastic to the face of the sand excavation and considered what it would require to secure the sand-wall for the several weeks necessary to install all the sheets along the east foundation wall.
Meanwhile, the cabin's internet was down. I could hear the relays of the homebrewed hotspot watchdog clicking as it tried to reset the hotspot and get it working again. I eventually disabled the watchdog and checked the hotspot's information web page, and it just said that there was a temporary problem with the cellular service. I then tried to check my Cricket account on my phone, but the website for that system is extremely slow and poorly-designed, so I couldn't navigate in far enough to see what the problem was. Back home in Hurley, I would later learn that I had used up all 20 GB of my data for this month, mostly from unbridled watching of YouTube videos and downloading a HD file of the first episode of the sixth season of Black Mirror. I'd thought I had about 5 GB left, but something had eaten that in the night. I suspect some internet providers do shady things with accounts that are nearing their bandwidth limits in an effort to upsell more expensive plans, and perhaps I was a victim of that. It will be easy to get more bandwidth, but it's going to cost me some money.

After cleaning up the cabin and doing some last-minute chores (including the color-coding of the two car chargers so I can better provide tech support when Gretchen is at the cabin alone), I left for Hurley with the dogs at around 5:30pm.
Meanwhile, Gretchen had been down in Manhattan and Brooklyn, and she wouldn't be returning until 11:00pm or so. She would be missing me entirely, though. The cats were being extremely needy, forcing me to escape to the greenhouse for the night.

Throckmorton the Loon, airborne above Woodworth Lake.

A chalk-fronted corporal dragonflie on the stone dock abutment. Click for a wider view showing a second one.

Beavers have been cutting down all the small hemlocks on the lakeshore trail northwest of the dock. This one even had a trail marker (installed by the previous owner) on it. Click to enlarge.

Neville down along the lakeshore northwest of the dock, viewed from higher up a steep escarpment. Click to enlarge.

A ref eft resting atop a stick I' installed for erosion control on the slope behind (north of) the cabin.

The new connector walkway, looking westward towards the front door walkway. Click to enlarge.

The new connector walkway, looking eastward towards the stone patio. You can tell the new stone because there are no plants growing in the cracks between them. Click to enlarge.

Ramona licking Lester's always-infected left ear immediately after we returned from the Adirondacks. Click to enlarge.

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