I really wish I had my camera with me to capture it while dropping off my daughter to school this morning, but maybe a thousand words (or less) will suffice. The morning had been overcast, but just as I was dropping off Mini Otaku, the cloud cover in the east broke and the sun beamed through. Given that sunrise was only a half hour ago, the light was essentially horizontal, meaning that the landscape was flooded with brilliant light. As a result, all the fall colors of the trees gleamed in their yellow and orange glory, with the contrast even more vivid because the backdrop to the west for the tableau was still dark grey cloud cover. To top it off, a rainbow flickered briefly, but strongly, into existence above the entire vista. It’s amazing how much dynamic range the real world has.
the trees have started to turn in Marshfield:
After 9 years in Houston, I’d almost forgotten how wondrous this is. Prior to that I’d spent two glorious years in New England, so it really was from one extreme to the other. I can’t wait for full-blown Fall to arrive in all its orange, red and purple glory.
For the latest in Hurricane Dean coverage, Eric Berger’s SciGuy blog at the Houston Chronicle is basically, ahem, the eye of the storm. The latest update puts landfall down in the Yucatan peninsula, meaning that there’s not much threat to Texas. Steven observed that I should be rather glad to have moved from Texas to Wisconsin two months ago; certainly true, my timing couldn’t have been better (and we just closed on our old house, so I wish the new owner best of luck. There’s precut plywood in the garage.) Somewhat ironically, it was a beautiful (though hot) day in Galveston county yesterday, as far as my contacts there reported. Meanwhile here in Marshfield it’s been cold drizzle since Saturday morning. My daughter has been going slightly stir crazy indoors, now that she’s used to roaming free outside. On the balance, I’d happily trade a little rain for a hot, muggy summer (and occasional hurricane threat). Of course, check back with me in November. Might be singing a different tune. I’d better get to Menard’s one of these days and scope out the snowblower aisle… buy some 2x4s to raise the boxes in the garage off the floor, too.
Of course, weather issues aside, there’s always a piece of me gonna stay down Texas way. As the bumper sticker says,
Back in Houston we ended up using Blockbuster’s movie rental service after trying out NetFlix, because Blockbuster offered such amazing value. The advantage of being able to drop off movies to the store – and to get a free store rental – just blew Netflix away. However, here in Marshfield, there isn’t a Blockbuster within a hundred miles. So, NetFlix becomes the only option again. It’s interesting to note that though Blockbuster was bleeding money earlier, NetFlix is starting to feel the heat – they just reduced prices across the board on their rate plans. That’s certainly welcome news but once we move to madison next year I have a feeling I’ll be back in the Blockbuster camp. The only way NetFlix is going to survive is if they partner with a retail chain to match Blockbuster on features; price wars alone just aren’t enough.
Can’t take government services for granted: driving to Wisconsin Rapids to get a SSN card for the baby today. Will be an adventure in patience.
UPDATE: back. pretty easy jaunt, about 36 miles and 45 minutes each way. For perspective, that’s like driving from Dickinson to Houston and back. Except this was almost entirely on county roads. Google’s suggested route turned out to be no timesaver; I came back the simpler way, a straight shot up Route 13. I’m glad I took different routes there and back, though – I need to develop my geographic intuition for this region a bit more. Note to self: don’t rely on the lettered county roads to be continuous.
Scarily, though I was careful to pack a freezer bag with a bottle of breastmilk along, I’d forgotten to take the nipple cap. Luckily she slept the entire time. She’s still asleep in fact. Strike that… she’s waking up. diaper and feeding time.
One 26 foot truck with trailer, four days, 1660+ miles, 197 gallons of diesel fuel, and 8.9 miles per gallon (est. highway).
Kind of speaks for itself, no? well, so too does this (look closely).
Here’s the detailed itinerary via Google (at zipcode resolution only, so its not 100% accurate on the side-street level). It turns out that I passed right through Nick’s backyard and also within shouting distance of Astro. That’s a genuine shame; my blogroll is a short one for a reason, and I’d have valued a meeting with either of them highly. Then again, as my twitter log shows, we were pressed for time the whole way and fell behind schedule, revising our plan somewhat along the route. I really enjoyed the freedom of looking at the map and saying, “today we will do this instead of this.”
Incidentally, I’ve also put my mileage calculations online in a google spreadsheet; since each time I filled up, I filled up the tank to the maximum, I think the implicit assumption of my calculation (that gallons filled are equal to gallons consumed on the previous leg) holds. I invite corrections.
And I will actually do some geek and anime blogging, too, while I am at it. I’m about halfway through the Girl Who Leapt…