Ginger, gingerly

Ginger flower

Turns out that balancing on the Boot and two crutches on a slope and bending over makes it rather difficult to focus my iPhone camera app.

Teardrops are leaves

Prius map leaves

Several months after we got the Prius Prime, I noticed these green leaves, which look like teardrops from a distance, on the dash-map in an irregular pattern.

John…, I hollered.

Turns out the car’s algorithms noticed that we stop repeatedly at certain locations. The leaf indicates that it will switch into a heightened form of regenerative breaking at those spots, if we brake there again. This means it gets a tad more juice into the battery at those momentum-breaking interludes.

If I have it right.

No-hurry Harvey

NASA Harvey rainfall

NASA is projecting that Hurricane Harvey will be parked over this stretch of the Texas coast for a couple of days, raining, raining, and raining. This is flat land, at low elevations, especially vulnerable to that much rain…. In a few places, they predict Harvey may drop 35 inches of rain…. Whew!

Harvey potential storm surge

With elevation maps and rainfall predictions, along with storm surge/tides, NASA can merge the spatial data and map flooding potentials…. [Website visitors can zoom in far more than this….]

I suspect the calculations behind this are as complex as the eclipse models I looked at earlier this week. They’re just exclusively on this planet.

And none of this discussion is about wind effects. ☔️

UPDATE: And, just a few minutes after I posted this, I read that Harvey is now a Category 4 storm. 💨

Foreign craftsmanship

Dublin street bricks

I’ve been checking GooStreetView and other mapping details (e.g., bus routes from Ranelagh to Stoneybatter—two Dublin suburbs) to satisfy wonder-where-that-is questions that arise in my mind as I read the Tana French detective stories…I’m on the last one published…in 2016….

Long story short, I found this alternate reality brick wall and window detail that I THINK is a result of Goo’s photo-mosaic-melding algorithms.

Talented brick work, no?

New device

Green Steed

AmazingPrime delivered the Steed today. Steed is one of a class of non-motorized vehicles called a knee scooter or knee walker. I put the knee of my bad leg on the pad, release the brake, and walk with my good leg to zoom around!

The basket is really crucial to improving my quality of life. I can hang my water cup handle over the edge of the basket, which means I can refill my water ANYTIME. By MySELF.

It’s a new world (of healing)!

Now I’m working on my stamina…you lose a lot just sitting around.

Rock on!

Not London, not falling

Bascule bridge business end

During our boat tour focused on the architecture along the Chicago River a month ago, we passed several bascule bridges. This one carried two sets of rails, but is now…offline. Bascule bridges have a big counterweight, and on this one it sits/hangs above the tracks when the bridge is down.

The first bridge across the Chicago River was a pedestrian bridge in approximately this location.

Two excitements

White gardenia

Today’s two excitements are not on the same plane. First, the gardenias have reached full scent. And that is some glorious plant-perfume.

The other excitement is the brand-new iPad, the brand-new model that shipped today. It is fast and commodious (inside, at least that’s what I hear), and has a wider gamut than any of our other screens. At least, I have that on good authority.

The delivery of the new device had its own drama. Brown promised it by 7pm—and it was no-show on that schedule. I was hungry, and debated a bit, then dropped the pasta in the boiling water, figuring that, in the way of these things, would get it to show up. Yup. Right at 7:15.

Dinner and an iPad.



(Translation from the IKEA lingo = ) A half-dozen inexpensive steak knives. Meaning they saw a bit more than slice. Which can be workable, but, better that a steak knife cuts.

Didn’t serve beef-steak this evening, but pork tenderloin medallions with sautéed mushrooms. Mmmm.

An independent evaluator might rule that I’m skipping the day’s household headline: GooFiber arrived! We now are speedy-fast! The speed metric increased from 20ish to over 900! That’s acceleration! Pad your neck and avoid whiplash!

Tired of ruins?

Cottage fireplace surround n table

We spent most of the day at a 170-acre living history village-and-rural-area that is paired with an indoor museum of transportation. We began in the rural area. At least a half-dozen stone cottages in different styles and dates offer the opportunity to think about heating/cooking with coal or peat turves and living in close proximity to farm animals. One cottage (no photo) even had a byre at one end and family space at the other—with no wall in between; maybe it was only used seasonally, however.

Spade smiths water powered trip hammer

We enjoyed a long chat with a spade-smith; he makes spades, not shovels (shovels are for loose materials). This is his water-powered trip hammer. 3K pounds of pressure per smack. No water flowing to make it trip today….

Ireland kinograph

And this is a shot from a 1940 news-reel/documentary about spade and shovel making in the town of Monard, County Cork. With water power and coal-fired forges. Laborers worked six days a week. On the seventh they went to church, played gambling games, and played music and danced. Ireland had a great diversity of spade and shovel types. Over a hundred, and then many different sizes of each. Diversity.

Johns angry geese

John tried a bullfighter move with these geese. No horns involved, thankfully, just hissing.

Horse moment

Me, I had a chat with this horse (we think in a field next to the museum property).

Begging burro nose

And we both had a moment with this donkey. One lady looked around for grass-not-nettles and fed her a small handful. Happy day for the donkey.

Cruck truss detail

This wall is cut-away and labeled to highlight the crucks—those curving beams that go up from the ground and support the roof beams. I think folks used ropes to bend trees to make the needed shapes. Crucks were also used in ship-building.

Simple rowhouse fireplace

Here’s the fireplace in one apartment in a row of village/urban row-homes with this small room downstairs, two teensy bedrooms upstairs, and a tiny yard out back with a water closet and coal bin, and a bit more room for washing laundry, etc. I thought this is the kind of place where TB would have spread quickly.

Carpenters shop

Look at the rows of tools etc. in this carpenter’s shop.

Co Donegal railways logo detail

Next we went across the highway to the Transport Museum. Of course, we started with trains. This is the shamrock detail on the County Donegal Railways seal.

Third class carriage

Here’s the third-class area on a train carriage. They had to pass a law in Ireland to make the railways put roofs and sidewalls on third-class spaces. They used to be like riding in a cart—just relatively low side walls, with riders fully exposed to the weather.


Loved this stylized image of Giant’s Causeway and the cliffs that frame it even today. I think I read that this began to be a travelers’ destination in the 1700s. !!


Cars, too! An MGB Roadster, 1975 model.

RR bridge arch shadows drone

Droney made two short runs, and the Guru captured the lovely shadow from this long railroad bridge during the first one.

Glitzy in two “flavors”

Dogwood leaf cascade

The buds and petals are long gone…and we now have this cascade of glossy dogwood leaves.

Droney almost landed

We also caught the sunset light (sunset above the trees, anyway) from The Heights. Here’s the almost-landed moment, when Droney and its shadow look like a grey crab.