Ready for Tomorrow

Harry’s stuff is all packed and ready to load into the car in the morning. My camera batteries are charged and the Mazda has a full tank of gas.

Harry is planning on getting up after 6:00. I’m thinking of getting up a lot earlier than that. Maybe I’ll be able to get my walkies in before he wakes up.

I’m really going to miss him when he’s gone, but that’s the price you pay for raising smart kids. They go off to college and leave you behind. It’s sad but it’s also awesome. I couldn’t be more proud of both kids.

Packing Up

Harry’s getting all of his boxes packed up and ready to go for tomorrow. The plan is for him to load up his car in the morning and anything that doesn’t fit will go into our car.

In the interest of distracting myself from the imminent return of the empty nest syndrome I am trying to figure out what to do with the camera situation. There will be rest stops and gas stations and maybe lunch in downtime Burlington and I still want to find a way to convince the love of my life to drive through Woodstock, VT and possibly the glory that is the Quechee Gorge (I think there’s zero chance of either thing) and in the current mental state I will need a camera close to me at all times. Film is a given, right? But these days film requires a digital companion. Will it be the DSLR or will it be the point and shoot? The iPhone will be there, of course, but which other camera will be there with it?

I am not going to make that call tonight, but in preparation I have put both camera’s batteries on their chargers. It also depends on how much stuff ends up in our car. If I have room for the bag I’ll take the DSLR. If not then I’ll take the point and shoot. Here’s hoping for sun and a chance to get close to Lake Champlain (pretty much zero chance of that too). Also maybe a chance to see some of the cool parts of downtown. We’re dropping Harry’s stuff off and then moving across town to meet Bellana. Lunch downtown could happen.

I’m not sure where this post is going anymore. Camera. Film Camera. Digital Camera. Yadda yadda yadda.

It’s quarter past nine in the evening and I haven’t done my walkies yet. I will do it after everyone else goes to bed, which should be any minute now.

It’s Friday

This has felt like a long week, and today is going to feel like a long day.

I want to do something this weekend. Something that involves going somewhere without spending money on anything other than gas and travel snacks. You know what I mean?

Let’s go back to Boston again. Let’s go on a road trip looking for New Englandy things like light houses. Let’s go visit the ocean without going to an insanely busy beach. Let’s go find waterfalls. Let’s go do any of the back-to-nature things I’ve been wanting us to do for over a decade now. Let’s go on a scenic drive. Let’s listen to a Harry Potter book on tape while we drive to some destination that is significantly less important than the trip to said destination. Lets go someplace where we can see stars (this one can’t happen this weekend because Harry works at night).

Let’s do something different. The friggin’ pandemic has locked us in for 2.5 years. Going to Boston last weekend scratched an itch that I had forgotten I had. Now I want to do everything and go everywhere. I still want to stay away from people and I still don’t want to spend any money on anything, but I want to do something. I want to go somewhere. I want to see stuff.

I also want to see my mother a few times, and I want to watch the last (2.5 hour long!) episode of Stranger Things with Jen, and I want to spend time with Harry while we still can before he goes back to school.

I guess I am just being greedy. I want everything and I want it now.

Evening Drive

Harry and Jen and I just drove up to the ocean and back while listening to Pink Floyd. It was epic.

The Wall and Dark Side of the Moon all the way through.


We all needed to get out of the house. You know how it is when you’re 2.5 years into a pandemic. Sometimes you just need to get out of the house…

…and sometimes you need to blast The Floyd while you’re toolin’ up route 495 North.


I did it. Somehow.

After a rough day all around followed by a difficult night with a lot of really bad back pain, I managed to get out of bed around 5:00am.

The IKEA pickup window is open and we are ready to head out.

It’s going to be a long and physically challenging day for your fat and out of shape narrator.

Come along for the bitching and the moaning. It’ll be fun.

Road Trip Stats

This is going to be the most fascinating post ever. 100 years from now they are going to be writing graduate school thesis papers about this sucker, believe me.

Stats from the road trip today.

Home to school
196.8 miles
Three hours and 37 minutes
Average speed 54 miles per hour.

School back to home
190.2 miles
Three hours and 40 minutes
Average speed 51 miles per hour.

Round trip
387.0 miles
Seven hours and 17 minutes
Average speed 52 miles per hour.

I think we made the same number of stops each leg of the drive, but the short detours the first time around were longer than the second. The average speed on the second leg would have been faster but there was a two mile traffic jam merging from I89 to I93.

See? I told you this one was going to be fascinating. I can see by the look on your face that you are utterly fascinated. Like, your mind is blown.


Usually when we go up to Vermont we leave as early as humanly possible so that we can spend as much time there as we can and still get home at a non-ridiculous hour. Today is a little different. I have to time my arrival to match up with his class schedule. That means I have another hour or so before I have to leave.

I was thinking about playing some guitar before I go, but Jen is working and a few minutes from now she’ll be in a meeting. Better for me to keep quiet. It got me thinking about gear though. The amplifier I am going to use for November is a Vox MV50 Clean. There are a ton of MV50 models, but the Clean is the only one that comes with an attenuator. The others have a master volume. Blah.

It’s supposed to be a 50 watt amp and the attenuator has three settings; Off, 1/10th power, and 1/100th power. So it can be 50 watts, five watts, or 0.5 watts. At 50 watts it is loud. Great googlymoogly it is loud. At 0.5 watts it’s not. It’s a nice, useable at home volume. Well… still maybe a smidge loud, but not bad. I keep it at 0.5 all the time.

But should I? I was complaining the other day about it caving in when I bomb it with signal out of one of my overdrive pedals. Maybe I should set it to 1/10th power and just keep the volume control really low. Hell, maybe I should turn the attenuator off and see if I can use the volume control to keep things manageable. It’s doubtful, but maybe worth a try?

Huh… we’ll see.

Change of subject: Last night I don’t know what I was thinking. Two nights ago I had a memory lapse and got into bed without putting my CPAP mask on. Dumb ass. I realized the mistake before my head was on the pillow and all was right with the world again. Last night I missed two things. I forgot to top off the CPAP machine’s humidifier tank. Oops. It didn’t run out, but it’s close to empty.

I also forgot to charge my friggin’ watch. I finished my 30 minutes of exercise and just forgot to put it on the charger. Next thing I know I’m dozing off and my battery is at 30 something percent. Crap. Well, if it dies it dies. What’s a red head to do? I went to sleep. When I woke up today it was at 12%. It’s good to know that I can go 24 hours without a charge. The downside of course is that it’s been on the charger for about 90 minutes and it’s only back up to 52%. It’s probably not going to be fully charged by the time I have to leave. That’s okay. It’ll be charged enough.

I still need to top off the gas tank (it’s about 190 miles each way. In my hybrid Kia, if I start with a full tank I can get there and back and still have about a quarter of a tank left. I friggin’ love science) and pick up some caffeinated beverages for the ride. After that the only question is music or podcasts? If it’s music I might go with the new live record from The Pineapple Thief. I first stumbled across them a couple of years ago and it’s all good stuff, just nothing that sets the world on fire for me. Their new live record (they couldn’t tour last year so they did one show in an empty room and webcast it everywhere. The new record is that show) does it. It sets the red head’s head right on fire. Great album. I was seeing all this potential and waiting for a record that lived up to it. The last one was close. This new one nails it. Having said that though… I’ll still probably go with podcasts. That’s just kinda where I’m at this morning.

Happy travels, folks!

Road Trip on the Books

It’s official. I’m Vermont bound in the morning. Three hours up, drop off a laptop, three hours back. Sounds like a fun day to me.

The last time we went up there we took the kids to lunch. Covid dictated we get take out and eat it in the car. Someone, I’m not sure who, did not finish their lunch (it wasn’t me, I scarfed my sub down like the universe depended on it). I went to get something out of the car this morning and… oh the smell was powerful. I cleaned out the food and opened all of the windows. I think it’s okay now.

I mentioned before that I started a time lapse video with my iPad before work this morning. It’s still running. I’m going to stop it soon. It’s been over 10 hours. That should be a pretty good chunk of data for the iPad to work with.

I was thinking about time lapses and the road trip that’s coming and trying to figure out a way to have a time lapse running out the window of the car for the whole way up and the whole way back. Can I do that? I’d have to figure out a way to either aim out the window, or balance the iPad against the window. I think it might be more trouble than it’s worth. I wish I still had that little iPod Touch. If I could keep it plugged in that would work. Too bad it died.

Oh well. Probably not worth the effort.

Okay, I need to go blow out the candles. Talk to you later.